Egypt official says was contacted by NY Times over Israel airstrikes report

Head of Egypt’s State Information Service (SIS) Diaa Rashwan said on Sunday he was contacted by a correspondent affiliated with the American newspaper The New York Times before it published a recent report in which it claimed that Israel has been carrying out airstrikes in Egypt’s North Sinai.

In a phone-in interview with the “Yahdoth Fe Masr” (Happening in Egypt) talk show on the MBC Masr channel, Rashwan said that he had objected against The New York Times relying on anonymous sources for its report.

In the article, The New York Times alleged that Israel, with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s approval, has secretly been carrying out more than 100 air strikes against Islamic State targets on Egyptian territory for the past two years.

Egypt’s military spokesperson Tamer El-Refaai told Egypt Independent on Sunday that the report is “not credible”.

The spokesperson stressed that the Egyptian army is the sole entity that is conducting military operations, in co-operation with local police forces, in North Sinai.

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