The two young Israelis who biked across the Egyptian border Monday night did so deliberately, and not by accident, as was the initial presumption.
According to police, the 18-year-olds crossed the Negev border in what they defined "a feat of courage" prior to their enlistment into the IDF. The Egyptian soldiers who encountered the infiltrators arrested them and refused to release them back into Israeli territory, which led to reports that they were abducted.
After hours of negotiations between Israeli security forces and their Egyptian counterparts, the two were returned to Israel shortly after 3 a.m., Tuesday. They returned to their homes after being questioned by Dimona police.
In past years, infiltrating neighboring Arab borders was a way for Israeli youth to flaunt bravado prior to enlistment, with Petra topping the list of exotic and dangerous destinations.