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Egypt’s North Sinai Under Curfew Following Deadly Clashes

Sinai is divided by the coup which overthrew Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.
Anti-Mursi protesters are pictured during clashes with members of the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of deposed Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi near Maspero, Egypt's state TV and radio station, near Tahrir square in Cairo July 5, 2013. Seventeen people were killed in violence in Egypt on Friday as supporters of deposed Islamist President Mohamed Mursi protested his overthrow by the army, state television said, quoting Health Ministry data.        REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh  (EGYPT - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL

CAIRO — A full curfew was imposed by Egypt’s military across the northeastern Gaza-bordering towns of Rafah and Sheikh Zowayyed in the volatile Sinai Peninsula. Shops were forced to shut down and streets were blocked by military troops in anticipation of street battles between security forces and heavily armed supporters of ousted president Mohammed Morsi.

Several eyewitnesses told Al-Monitor that the curfew was imposed without prior notice or official announcement; it was enforced on Friday night as armed confrontations continued to escalate. The North Sinai Governorate headquarters based in the Mediterranean port of El-Arish was raided by dozens of armed Islamists in the aftermath of the Wednesday military coup led by Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi that ousted the Muslim Brotherhood’s Morsi.

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