The Islamist revolt in the peninsula grew rapidly after Mubarak’s fall. Now, neither government forces nor their jihadist foes can control the area
Over the last ten years, radical Islamists have gained a foothold among the disaffected tribes of the Sinai peninsula and now a full-blown insurgency is in progress. The slow-burning conflict, marked by almost daily killings and occasional major violent convulsions, is likely to persist without either the state or the rebels tipping the balance decisively.Now, northern Sinai changes hands daily – the jihadists mounting checkpoints in order to uncover informers at night. When day breaks, the army emerges to erect its own checkpoints, sometimes launching raids backed by Apache attack helicopters and tanks on what it believes to be rebel safe-houses. This is the broad pattern of the government's conflict with Islamist militants in northern Sinai, the wilderness sandwiched between the Suez Canal and the Israeli border.
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