Egyptian authorities arrest suspect of Sinai kidnapping

May 30, 2013 16:50

CAIRO - Egyptian authorities have arrested a first suspect in connection with the kidnapping of seven security men two weeks ago by Islamist militants in Sinai, security sources said on Thursday.

The desert along Egypt's border with Israel has slipped into anarchy since President Hosni Mubarak was toppled in a popular uprising in 2011 and the state has struggled to restore order there since.The militants, who demanded the release of jailed Islamists, let the men go on May 22 after mediation by Beduin tribal leaders.

Prior to their release, Egypt stepped up the security presence in North Sinai, setting up new roadblocks and reinforcing existing ones with the aim of choking off supplies and reinforcements for the kidnappers.

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