Egypt’s military crackdown on unrest in the Sinai Peninsula has gotten a boost today from Israel, which signed off on a deployment of two additional battalions into the border territory.
Under the terms of their peace treaty, Israel has to pre-approve significant military moves in Sinai, which was put in place at the time to keep the border area calm.
Yet in the context of Egypt’s military coup against its elected government, the army is looking to crack down on Islamist factions in Sinai, and has been hyping Hamas “infiltration” to justify deployments.
Israel seems just fine with that, never having been keen on Egypt’s President Morsi in the first place and liking the idea of an anti-Hamas force in Sinai. Though Israeli officials see this as beneficial in the near-term, being publicly linked to crackdowns by the new junta is liable to create a lot of new long-term enemies.
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