Egypt is preparing a military operation to root out al-Qaida cells that have been established in the past several months in the Sinai peninsula, CNN reported on Friday.
Senior Egyptian officials told CNN that they were focusing there operation in the coastal area between El-Arish and Rafah on the border with the Gaza Strip.
"Al-Qaida is present in Sinai mainly in the area of Sakaska close to Rafah," a general in Egypt's intelligence was quoted as saying on Thursday. "They have been training there for months, but we have not identified their nationalities yet."
"We plan to clean out those criminal pockets around the area of Rafah and Sheikh Zuweid," secretary general for North Sinai governorate, Gaber al-Araby stated.