Egypt forces have killed 38 militants in major operation

Egyptian Army's Armoured Vehicles are seen on a highway to North Sinai during a launch of a major assault against militants, in Ismailia, Egypt. (REUTERS)
Updated 13 February 2018
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Egypt forces have killed 38 militants in major operation

CAIRO: Egypt’s military said Tuesday it has killed 38 militants and arrested more than 500 suspects days after launching a major operation against an Daesh group affiliate in Sinai.
The military said it had killed 10 “extremely dangerous” extremists, in addition to 28 jihadists it had previously announced as having been killed.
A statement added that 400 “criminal elements and suspects” had been arrested, having previously announced the arrest of 126 people.
The dead militants had been “hiding inside a house in the vicinity of El-Arish city (North Sinai province’s capital) following a shoot-out,” spokesman Col. Tamer Al-Rifai said in the statement.
The operation has also destroyed several vehicles and warehouses, he said.
On Friday, the military announced the start of “Operation Sinai 2018” in the Sinai Peninsula bordering Israel, the central Nile Delta and the Western Desert near the border with Libya.
The security sweep comes as President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi seeks re-election in March, after a first term in office that has seen him crack down on an insurgency and other opponents.
Egypt’s security forces have been increasingly targeted by militants since the army — then headed by Sissi — overthrew president Muhammad Mursi in 2013.
Militants linked to Daesh and based in North Sinai have waged a deadly insurgency against the country’s security forces.
Egypt’s air force and navy have also been taking part in the operation, with the Sinai sweep focusing on targets in the north and center of the peninsula.


Canada to resettle group of Syrian White Helmets

Updated 20 October 2018
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Canada to resettle group of Syrian White Helmets

  • Canada has supported the work of the White Helmets by helping them to expand, train more volunteers, train more women and save more lives
  • Jordan said a group of 279 Syrian rescue workers has left the kingdom for resettlement in Western countries

OTTAWA: Canada is preparing to welcome a group of Syrian White Helmets rescuers, officials said on Friday, without specifying when they will be resettled.
“Together with a core group of international allies, Canada is working to resettle a group of White Helmets and their families after they had to flee Syria as a result of being specifically targeted by the Syrian regime and its backer, Russia,” Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland and Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, said in a joint statement.
“As first responders, the White Helmets have witnessed first-hand some of the most appalling crimes committed by the murderous Assad regime. Canada has supported the work of the White Helmets by helping them to expand, train more volunteers, train more women and save more lives,” they said, referring to Syrian President Bashar Assad.
In July, following the evacuation of 400 White Helmets from Syria to Israel and then to Jordan, Canada announced that it was ready to accommodate 50 of them and their families, for a potential total of 250 people.
Jordan said Wednesday a group of 279 Syrian rescue workers has left the kingdom for resettlement in Western countries.
Founded in 2013, the Syrian Civil Defense, or White Helmets, is a network of first responders who rescue wounded in the aftermath of air strikes, shelling or blasts in rebel-held territory.