UN peacekeeping force: Israeli forces crossed Egyptian border by land

Israeli troops crossed into Egypt by land on Thursday, which prompted Egyptian security personnel to clash with them, said a report issued Saturday by the UN peacekeeping force in Sinai.

Media reports had said an Israeli helicopter crossed the border to pursue suspected militants and then fired at Egyptian border guards, killing five and injuring two. 

The peacekeeping force said that the Egyptians had not been targeted by an aircraft, however, and that Israeli forces in fact entered Sinai by land before clashing with the police unit at border point 79 and causing the deaths. 

The peacekeeping force examined the boundary line where the clashes took place, recording several violations by Israeli troops.

Israel said the Israeli forces shot the Egyptian soldiers by mistake while pursuing those who carried out an attack in the southern Israeli town of Eilat, also on Thursday. 

The report said the peacekeeping forces did not witness Palestinians crossing from Israel into Sinai.

The role of the peacekeeping force, according to Egypt's peace treaty with Israel, is limited to monitoring irregularities between the two sides, without interfering. 

Abdel Nasser al-Tayeb, Attorney General of the North Sinai prosecution service, decided to postpone an inspection of the border area where the clashes took place until the security situation improves. 

The prosecution had asked the Criminal Investigation Department to urgently prepare a detailed report on the incident.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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