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Egypt’s Interior Minister: ‘Our Forces Lead the Fight against Terrorism’ | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Egypt’s Interior Minister General Magdi Abdel Ghaffar speaks during a news conference in Cairo, Egypt March 6, 2016. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

Cairo- Egyptian Interior Minister Lieutenant-General Majdi Abdul Ghaffar said his country is engaged in a fierce and unprecedented fight with terrorism, stressing “the police have taken the lead and succeeded in the past in carrying out pre-emptive attacks.”

Meanwhile, an Egyptian court has sentenced two members of the Muslim Brotherhood to five and 10 years in prison after being convicted of acts of violence south of Cairo.

Since the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013, Egypt has witnessed a wave of violence and bombings, usually targeting military and police elements, particularly in the northern Sinai province.

Egyptian authorities hold the Muslim Brotherhood, which is officially classified as a terrorist group, responsible for violent acts in the country, in addition to other extremist organizations that the authorities say are linked to the Brotherhood, most notably Ansar Beit al-Maqdis in Sinai and the Hasm movement, which has recently claimed responsibility for armed operations in Cairo and the Nile Delta.

During his meeting Sunday at the police academy with a number of new officers, Abdul Ghaffar said “Egypt is engaged in a fierce and unprecedented battle with terrorism, which seeks in various ways to undermine the stability of the state.”

The minister reviewed with the officers the current security situation.

He pointed out that police had a national duty to eliminate terrorism along with members of the armed forces.

The minister stressed the need to preserve the efforts aimed at enhancing stability and developing measures to confront the dangers of terrorism and crime in all their forms.

He warned of “the spread of extremism and terrorism, especially with the modern means of communication, and exploiting them in the falsification of youth awareness.”

He also urged the necessity to understand security plans put forth to avoid terrorist threats, especially in light of the current challenges and the increasing dangers that threaten the stability of the region, and the attempt by terrorist elements to exploit the status quo to commit acts of violence with the aim of destabilizing not only the region but the whole world.