Militant video shows Egyptian armour being overrun

Terrorism & Insurgency
20 November 2014

Militants celebrate their victory by climbing on top of an M60 tank to wave the black jihadist banner. Source: Islamic State Sinai Province

Key Points

  • The new Sinai affiliate of the Islamic State has released a video to claim the 24 October attack on the Egyptian Army
  • The video shows a ruthless and sustained attack that overran a mechanised detachment of at least five armoured vehicles

The severity of the insurgency facing the Egyptian military in the Sinai Peninsula has been highlighted by a video showing the attack that reportedly killed at least 30 Egyptian soldiers on 24 October. Continue reading

Radioactive Material Stolen in Egypt

KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP/Getty Images

A radioactive warning symbol

Summary

Calibration devices that may contain radioactive material were reportedly stolen from a contentious nuclear power plant that is under construction Jan. 18 in Dabaa, Egypt. Due to the small amounts of radioactive material that would be in each device, the threat of malicious exposure to radiation is very low, though accidental exposure is a possibility. In fact, given the public discontent over the power plant, it is likely that the thieves do not know what the devices are and only took them as part of a larger theft intended to delay the plant’s construction.

Analysis

Egyptian state-run newspaper Al-Ahram on Jan. 19 reported the theft a day earlier of calibration devices that may contain radioactive material from a controversial nuclear power plant under construction in Dabaa, Egypt. The identities of the thieves are unknown, but it is possible that they are local Bedouins, who have been vandalizing and violently protesting against the plant, which is being built on land taken from them without compensation.

If the stolen devices do contain radioactive material, that material could be extremely dangerous, but it is unlikely that the thieves even know what they possess. The radioactive devices were likely just part of a larger theft intended to delay the plant’s construction. For this reason and others, the threat of malicious radiation exposure is very low. Instead, the greater risk is from accidental exposure.

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