CAIRO: The Ismailia Criminal Court has decided to extend the detention of 15 of the 62 suspects in the Sharm El-Sheikh and Dahab bombings for a further 45 days until State Security wraps up its investigations.
The presiding judge decided on the extension last Saturday as the suspects faced charges of possession and usage of explosive substances in order to harm Egyptians and foreign tourists and the destruction of public and private property.
The bombing in the resort of Sharm El-Sheikh in July 2005 was the deadliest attack on Egyptian soil, in which 88 people were killed and over 200 injured. Three vehicles loaded with explosives were set off in three different spots, one of them rammed into a hotel in Neama Bay to create most of the carnage.
The Dahab bombings of April 2006 also consisted of three separate explosions and was also on a public holiday. Twenty-three people were killed and around 80 were wounded in the attacks.
There have been no terrorist attacks in Sinai since but a much more primitive attack took place near Al-Hussein mosque in Cairo last February which caused the death of a French teenager in Cairo on a school trip.
The Ministry of Interior denied last week in a statement that there had been an attempt to blow up a bus full of tourists in Sinai two months ago as some reports had indicated.
Since the Sinai bombings of 2005 and 2006 authorities instituted a huge crackdown on the area which has led to tension ever since between security forces and residents of Sinai, especially Northern Sinai.
Since then, Bedouin tribes and residents of the towns and cities that dot Sinai have bemoaned the constant security raids and the detention of thousands of their kinfolk for years on end.