Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi called on Egyptians to participate in large numbers in the upcoming presidential elections in order to continue “building the nation,” speaking at a meeting with top security officials at the interior ministry on Wednesday.
Citizens should participate in the upcoming vote, scheduled for 26 to 28 March, to express their free will, regardless of political orientation, and to contribute to the building of the nation and to maintaining its freedom, safety and stability, the president said.
The meeting was attended by Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, Interior Minister Magdy Abdel-Ghaffar, Defence Minister Sedqi Sobhi and acting Intelligence Chief Abbas Kamel, as well as top armed forces and interior ministry officials, and took place at the interior ministry’s headquarters in New Cairo.
During the meeting, which was partially televised, the president reviewed a detailed report on security measures over the last four years.
He also reviewed the interior ministry’s role in Operation Sinai 2018, a military operation launched last month to tackle terrorism in north and central Sinai, as well as other areas of the country.
A report presented by security by Interior Minister Magdy Abdel-Ghaffar stated that the country’s security situation is improving “following years of instability, chaos and weak security.”
On counter-terrorism efforts, the ministry launched a large number of precautionary operations, eliminating 992 terrorist hideouts and arresting “19,108 terrorist elements.”
“The ministry’s security operations prevented a large number of terrorist attacks during the last four years,” the minister said.
According to Abdel-Ghaffar, terrorist attacks were down 85 percent in 2017 compared to the previous four years.
“The number of terrorist attacks registered in 2017 was 22, in comparison to 481 attacks in 2014,” the minister said, praising the efforts and sacrifices of the security forces.
The ministry also carried out efforts on pursuing economic entities and establishments that financially assist terrorist organisations.
On countering criminal activity in the country, the ministry eliminated 205 dangerous criminal hideouts and arrested 134,681 “criminal suspects,” as well as 5,157 criminal gangs, the minister said.
Interior ministry forces also foiled 615 “illegal migration attempts” during the past four years.