Egypt police close Gaza border to protest kidnap

Last Updated: Friday, May 17, 2013 - 19:54

Cairo: Several policemen at Egypt`s main crossing point into the Gaza Strip on Friday launched an indefinite sit-in and closed the border to protest the abduction of their seven colleagues.

The policemen have closed the Egyptian port of Rafah entrance and exit gates and they are sitting in front of the port to stop any crossing, an Egyptian security official said.

Soldiers along with employees at the border stressed that they will keep the border closed until their kidnapped colleagues are freed, Al-Ahram weekly reported.

Seven members, including one member of the armed forces, four port security officers, and two Central Security men, were kidnapped on Thursday by unknown assailants from Egypt`s lawless Sinai Peninsula.
It was the first time members of Egypt`s security forces were kidnapped by suspected militants.

A security source has said that the kidnappers have demanded the release of Islamist militants detained for almost two years.

President Mohammad Mursi on Thursday summoned his defence and interior ministers over the kidnapping and held a crisis talk.

The incident, however, highlighted the rift between the army and the presidency as the Minister of Defence Abdel Fattah al-Sisi refused to join the talk at the presidential palace.
He later went to review the situation with the President, minister of interior and the head of intelligence.

The kidnappers are said to be families of those serving life-long sentences in prison.

The Egyptian army said Bedouins of the region are involved and ruled out the involvement of Hamas.

PTI



First Published: Friday, May 17, 2013 - 19:54

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