Israelis in Sinai advised to leave immediately

Travel warning issued by PM's office; information received suggests plans to kidnap Israelis vacationing in the area.

By
November 11, 2010 23:19
1 minute read.
A Beduin man rides a camel on Sinai beach.

sinai beach camel 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

 
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A travel warning was issued late Thursday by the Israeli Prime Minister's office, calling on Israelis in Sinai to leave and return to Israel straight away.

The warning quoted "reliable and current intelligence" about a kidnapping plot and called on "all Israelis in Sinai to leave immediately and return to Israel."

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Citing credible intelligence, the Israeli Counter-Terror Bureau (CTB) sharpened its advisory against traveling to the Sinai Peninsula also on Thursday evening.

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According to the bureau, Israeli intelligence agencies have received information regarding plans by the Army of Islam – a Palestinian terror group affiliated with al Qaida and based in the Gaza Strip – to kidnap Israelis currently vacationing in the Sinai.

Last week, the Israei Air Force – acting upon intelligence provided by the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) – bombed a car in which 27-year-old Mohammed Namnam, a top operative with the Army of Islam, was sitting. According to the Shin Bet, Namnam, from the Shati refugee camp, was responsible for a number of attacks against Israel in recent years.

The CTB said on Thursday that the assassination of Namnam was part of Israeli efforts to foil the Army of Islam’s plans.

On Wednesday, Time Magazine claimed that the intelligence on Namnam was provided to Israel by Egypt whose security forces recently rounded up a number of Army of Islam operatives in the Sinai.

AP contributed to this report.

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