Two arrested over Egypt's Sinai kidnapping

Ahram Online , Thursday 30 May 2013

Egyptian security authorities arrest two men suspected of posting video of Sinai hostages on YouTube

Two men suspected of posting a video of seven Egyptian security personnel held hostage in the Sinai Peninsula were arrested on Wednesday, Al-Ahram Arabic news website reported.

In the video, posted on 19 May, three days after the kidnapping, seven men are seen blindfolded, with their hands on their heads, identifying themselves and pleading for officials to save them. The kidnappers also list their demands. The video was removed by YouTube hours later because it violated its "policy on violence."

The arrested men are the owner of an internet café in the North Sinai town of Al-Arish, from where police believe the video was uploaded, and Walid Saleh, 23, suspected of posting the video.

Saleh, who denies the accusation, is allegedly a neighbour of jihadist Ahmed Abu-Shita, whose release from jail, along with other jailed jihadists, was demanded by the kidnappers in return for the hostages.

Abu-Shita was sentenced to death in September 2012 for involvement in attacks on an Al-Arish police station and a bank in 2011, in which five security officers and one civilian died.

During televised comments on Wednesday, Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim announced the arrests and reiterated his determination to pursue the kidnappers.

The authorities are continuing their efforts to restore security in the peninsula, Ibrahim added.


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