Police vehicle hijacked in Egypt's southern Sinai Peninsula

Ahram Online, Tuesday 7 Aug 2012

Unknown assailants hijack Egyptian police vehicle in southern Sinai on Tuesday, two days after Sunday's bloody border attack

Unidentified gunmen on Tuesday hijacked a police vehicle in Al-Tor, in Egypt's southern Sinai Peninsula, after assaulting the vehicle's driver.

The incident comes two days after a deadly attack in northern Sinai – near Egypt's border with the besieged Gaza Strip – that left 16 Egyptian border guards dead.

"A group of armed men hijacked a car belong to the South Sinai Security Directorate on the international road in Al-Tor," an anonymous source was quoted as saying by Al-Ahram's Arabic-language news website.

"There were four men with firearms in two jeeps without license plates," the same source added. "They forced the police vehicle to a halt before hijacking it and setting off towards the mountains."

In the process, the source added, "the culprits assaulted the policeman who was driving the vehicle, who sustained cuts and bruises."

On Sunday, some 35 unidentified gunmen opened fire on an Egyptian border post, killing 16 Egyptian border guards. The assailants subsequently attempted to cross into Israel in a commandeered armoured vehicle and an explosives-laden pickup truck, according to Egyptian officials.

The source, however, went on to link Tuesday's carjacking to the families of local residents who had recently been detained by authorities.

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