Saturday, January 29, 2011
12 dead as Egyptian police, Beduins clash in Sinai
Violence at Rafah crossing; Hamas forces reportedly rush to scene to protect Gaza border; armed groups attack Egyptian security buildings.
Riots in Egypt spread to the Sinai Peninsula on Saturday as Palestinian news agency Ma'an reported that 12 Egyptian policemen were killed during clashes with the Beduin residents of Sinai.
As a result of severe clashes between the security forces and Beduins in Sinai, part of the border fence at Rafah was broken. Palestinian eyewitnesses reported that Hamas security forces rushed to the scene to protect the border between Gaza and Egypt over fears that Gazans would infiltrate into Egypt.
Ma'an reported that armed groups from Rafah attacked buildings in Rafah belonging to Egyptian security forces and set fire to them. There were also reports that the armed groups abducted three policemen and killed one of them named Juma Hamad, 36.
Beduin gunmen also blew up a security forces building in the Egyptian port el-Arish using a large explosive device, the report continued. As a result, an Egyptian citizen was killed and 12 others were injured.