By Nouran El-Behairy and Nasser El-Azazy
Masked gunmen launched an attack on a police patrol in on the bridge of the Wadi El-Arish in Sinai on Tuesday. Three soldiers were killed last week in the same place.
The attack resulted in the injury of inspector of the security of the Ministry of the Interior to the North Sinai region, Colonel Selim Gamal. Gamal was shot in the neck, according to a medical statement.
Gamal was transferred to Cairo to receive treatment in Agouza police hospital.
Major General Ali Azzazy, a high ranking security official in North Sinai, said the gunmen opened fire on the officer which led to a serious shoulder injury. The gunmen took the officer’s car and fled.
This comes after the deployment of Egyptian military forces across Sinai after demonstrations by policemen. The protesters denounced the killing of three of their colleagues at the hands of unidentified gunmen on Saturday.
A group named the “Salafi Jihadists” released a statement on Monday titled “latest police violations.” It said the police unjustly killed four Sinai residents, which led to the attack on the police patrols.
The statement explained that policemen had shot a taxi driver, killing him and the passenger who was next to him. Another truck driver and passenger were shot by a policeman, who dragged the driver out of the vehicle in an “inhumane” way.
“People demanded justice but authorities ignored their demands… the attack [on the police patrol] was followed by a media campaign to show that the police were targeted and the security was loose” the statement read.
It went on saying that the Salafi Jihadists were accused of targeting police, “but our weapons target only our nation’s enemies, the Jews,” adding that the attacks were planned by authorities to justify tightening security over Sinai.
Finally they said the major problem in Sinai was the marginalisation of the people by the authorities and the lack of their basic needs.
They described authorities as “inside enemies” who want to bring back tyranny and injustice.