In the anti-Egypt camp, some of its pockets and remnants continue to fight for their lives. This camp supports the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood organization, which its units have been united in a single trench since the Egyptian revolution in June 2013, seeking to destabilize the Egyptian state. These pockets include two states in the region, some international institutions, and people working in the field of human rights. All of them are exerting every effort to show that Egypt is an unstable state that is not keen on human rights in a bid to attract new parties to their trench. Amid an unquestioned progress made by Egypt in terms of fighting terrorism, regulating the economy and preparing the country for an actual launch, this camp has no alternative but to make false statements, especially concerning the campaign to eradicate terrorism in Northern Sinai, which is witnessing a war against the remnants of the terrorists who are funded and backed by a number of states.
For the Egyptian state, it would have been impossible to start implementing its dream of implementing development plans in Sinai—amid economic challenges—without putting an end for terrorism that impacts the lives of the Egyptian citizens. As stressed by President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, the rights for life and confronting terrorism are among the major pillars of human rights, although rights organizations continue to ignore them. They use human rights as weapons against the Egyptian state to the extent that these organizations have become a defender of the rights of the terrorists, offering them with a political cover for their operations against the Egyptian security forces and citizens. To serve this objective, these organizations have issued political reports, claiming they are human rights ones, that includes criticism to Egypt. This approach has come in an unprecedented manner, mainly in terms of the number of reports, orientation and degree of politicization. Such organizations claim that they conducted interviews with people living in Northern Sinai and some activists. Meanwhile, they deliberately ignored the ongoing, developmental efforts taking place in Sinai, as well the actual standpoints of the people living in Sinai: such information cannot be gathered through speaking to unidentified “50 people”. They do not also put into consideration the occasions in which the sheikhs (tribal leaders) of Sinai openly express their support to the efforts of the armed forces and state in combating terrorism, pushing for development or providing decent living conditions for the people of Sinai. One example can be that of Sheikh Eissa Al-Kharafeen, head of Northern Sinai’s tribes, who adopted the ambitious plan of President El-Sisi for developing the Sinai Peninsula in 6 February 2019. The plan comes in consistency with the aspirations of the people living in Sinai, and El-Kharafeen said that they have a sense that President El-Sisi is honest about his attempts to achieve development on the lands of Sinai by the year 2022, which will cost LE 270 billion. El-Kharafeen pointed out that the plan involves establishing new urban communities, including the new Rafah city and attracting three million people from the valley governorates to Sinai in the coming years. The plan also includes other objectives such as developing the tourism sector and creating an integrated industrial zone in order to provide new employment opportunities for the youth of Sinai. El-Kharafeen also added that the Sinai plan, implemented by the armed forces, carries blessings for Sinai and serves as a compensation for its people after years of marginalization and neglect.
In 14 January 2019, Sheikh Salem El-Oksh expressed a similar position, saying that the Bedouin tribes is living in stability after the enormous successes of the armed forces in its comprehensive operations in Sinai in 2018. The armed forces then destroyed the assets of the terrorist groups, cut their supply lines and killed hundreds of them who threatened the security of the area and the safety of the people who sought calm and peaceful lives. El-Oksh highlighted that the Bedouins trust the ability of the armed forces to protect the state and its public and private assets and the rights of the people of Sinai, as well as cutting the roots of terrorism. He noted that all the people of Sinai are enjoying a quiet life after the conclusion of the operations, conducting their regular activities in a normal manner such as going to government buildings and workplaces, as well as those related to health and education.
In 14 January 2019, Sheikh Abdel Hamed Al-Akhrasi, a leading Bedouin figure in Northern Sinai, said that the state cares about the people in Sinai, offering them working opportunities in national projects that are implemented by the state, in addition to establishing new communities in Sinai. These communities include those of the new Rafah city and the new Ismailia, which encouraged the people to renounce terror and extremism and hope for a better life. Al-Akhrasi also stressed that the sheikhs of the tribes and Bedouins in Sinai—regardless of the sacrifices to be made—will remain united with the Egyptian armed and security forces until Sinai is cleansed of armed terrorist groups that are trying to ruin Egypt. In 18 February 2018, Sheikh Abdallah Al-Gahama, head of the Sinai Fighters Association, said the people of Sinai realized after the January revolution in 2011 that they are living a state of war after the terrorists infiltrated the Ard al-Fayrouz (the land of turquoise). The people, the armed forces and the police are now all in one trench, and working together to protect the soil of Sinai and put an end to terrorism. The people in Sinai have confidence in the measures and steps taken by the armed and polices forces in their fight against terrorism, offering all types of support. Al-Gahama explained that the most significant aspect of cooperation between the army and the people and tribes of Sinai lies in chasing the terrorists and providing documented information about the criminal sites and areas that terrorists resort to for hiding purposes, which is useful for the armed and security forces to determine the exact location of the terrorists and target them.
In 19 December 2017, Sheikh Ouda Abo Al-Ateek, a leading figure in Sinai, described development as the best weapon to fight terrorism and extremism in Sinai, believing that the development plans will lead to a lot of employment opportunities and cause a strong defeat to terrorism. Al-Ateek also noted that this plan presents an emphasis that Sinai is owned by its people, and the state will never sacrifice a fraction of its territory, stating that the development plans in Bir al-Abed signifies a strong response to the displacement rumors that are promoted by the terrorist groups. In December 2017, Sheikh Naeem Gabr, another leading figure in Sinai, said that all tribes and people of Sinai stand behind the armed forces and police troops in their war against the terrorist elements that are putting maximum effort to turn their agenda of collapsing the Egyptian state—as well as imposing their control over it and undermining its institutions—into reality. He emphasized that the Egyptian army is depending on the people of Sinai: they have knowledge about the mountains. For Sheikh Kamel Matar, the development plans that Sinai is currently witnessing were not seen in the past 50 years as they tackle the infrastructure and creation of a number of factories that will offer thousands of working opportunities for the people of Sinai and the valley governorates. These plans send strong message to the terrorists, those who promote rumors and conspirators.
In brief, the development in Sinai has become a reality through the participation of the Sinai people in the process and state policy. In 5 May 2019, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly emphasized that the development of Sinai is “no longer a song being chanted during the Sinai Liberation Day on 25 April, but a tangible reality”.
This reality presents the most important features and steps of the national project for the development of Sinai, which is taking place in parallel with the anti-terrorism campaigns.
The 2030 Egyptian Strategy & Development in Sinai
The 2030 strategy of Egypt determined the general framework for the objectives that the Egyptian states will seek to achieve, including the geographical redistribution of people that will facilitate the settlement of people in strategic areas such as Sinai and the Western Desert, as well as the southern part. This lead to the establishment of the Sinai Company for Investment and Development that aims to turn Northern and Central Sinai into fully-developed societies. This will happen through using the competitive advantages of these areas and its natural, human and agricultural resources within the framework of the Suez Canal Development Project. The project involves the creation of special economic zone (SEZ) such as the industrial zone in Bir al-Abed. The project also includes factories that depend on using the raw materials available in Sinai such as the manufacturing of wires, salt-based industries, building materials that rely on local materials of cement and the treatment of flat glass and white sand.
The Sinai Development Strategy is based on three key objectives:
– Providing 2 Millions working opportunities.
– Pumping investments that is worth $20 billion.
– Increasing Sinai’s share of gross national income to 4.5%.
The total number of projects that will be implemented during a six-year period (2014-2020) to 994 projects with an estimated cost of LE795 billion. Between mid-2014 and March 2019, 751 projected were implemented in 21 sectors with a total investment of LE 357.7 billion. Moreover, 243 projects, worth LE 437 billons, are currently in progress, and will expectedly be finalized by June 2020.
Investments in Sinai and State Budget
Following the 30 June revolution, Egypt has become keen to avoid the development dilemmas that took place in the past in term of focusing on the center at the expense of the periphery, which a large part of the state’s developmental allocations went to it, particularly Upper Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula. This was stipulated in Chapter 6 of the state budget. The aim is to turn these two parts of the country into areas that equally attract people and investments. The developments can be seen more in the Sinai Peninsula, which comes in light of fighting terrorism and creating human blocs that can support the Egyptian national security at large.
Concerning the Sinai Peninsula, it is possible to examine this transformation through analyzing the state’s budget on the level of government expenditure on the short run, which is carried out by the Ministry of Finance to empower state institutions, make them capable of handling their day-to-day activities and provide basic services to citizens. Furthermore, regarding the medium and long-term investment spending, which the Ministry of Planning is responsible for to pave the way for making Sinai involved in the state’s investment plan in the future.
Short-Term Public Expenditure
The government allocates its expenses to the Sinai Peninsula through the administrative, state apparatus and the National Agency for the Development of the Sinai Peninsula. The agency is a public, economic entity that is affiliated to the Council of Ministers. It was established to serve as a tool to separate planning , supervision and following-up processes that is handled by the agency from that of implementation, which is the responsibility of ministers and governorates. Article 8 of Decree-Law No. 14 of 2012 on the integrated development of Sinai has specified 16 tasks to be handled by the agency. Its budget has continuously grown since its established, a situation that reflects the increasing interest in the development of Sinai. The following diagram clarifies this matter.
The figure shows the growth of state from LE 2 million when it was created, of which LE 1 million was allocated for capital expenditure in 2012/2013, to LE 30 million of which about 27 million went for capital expenditure. The allocations continued to increase in 2016/2017 with a total of 35 of which LE 20 million was allocated for investment spending, while its allocations during the current fiscal year reached LE 26 million of which 9.5 million went for capital expenditure. This means that the allocation of the agency during the six years shown in the figure reached about LE 155 million that were allocated for creating a suitable investment-friendly environment in the Sinai Peninsula, joining the tow other areas of Upper Egypt and the Suez Canal who had a similar experience of having an agency that is pushing the development process forward.
Concerning the administrative apparatus of the state, the state budget in the fiscal year 2018/2019 allocated a total of LE 25.4 billion for all 26 governorates. The General Secretariat of the Northern Sinai received LE 583.6 (2.3%), while LE 408.9 went for Southern Sinai (1.6%), which is a large proportion in relation to the size of the population. The following table offers a comparison between the sizes of some of the governorate’s populations and the allocations for their general secretariats.
The table shows that, despite reductions in allocations for the governorates of Northern and Southern Sinai in comparison to other above-mentioned governorates, both of them earned the largest portion of investments in relation to the size of their populations during the current year.
Long-Term Investment Expenditure
The Ministry of Planning directed state investments that is worth LE 2.98 billion during the year 2018/2019 for the development of Northern and Southern Sinai, which constitutes 3% of the total public investments. This is a high percentage in comparison to the populations of the two governorates. The state treasury funded 86% of this amount (LE 2553 million) with an increase of 32% (1.93 billon) compared to the year 2017/2018
Investments for Northern Sinai
The government investments reached LE 1.6 billion in Northern Sinai during the current year, and the government funds 95% of the total amount. The investments are distributed among the various sectors as follows:
Investments for Southern Sinai
The government investments reached LE 1.36 for Southern Sinai during the year 2018/2019, and the government funds 75% of the total amount. The following diagram explains these investments.
The Suez Canal’s Economic Zone
This economic zone aims at maximizing the revenues of investments, which will be useful for the coming generations in Egypt. Although the zone is beneficial for the whole country, it specifically serves the people living in the governorates that are adjacent to it, including Northern and Southern Sinai, through its services and facilities and the presence of thousands of working opportunities and new investments. The economic zone depends on the current capacities available around the area, including ports, new cities and urban communities and industrial and logistical zones.
The zone also offers zero customs for 22 Arab states and 24 African states and facilitates the investment procedures through the one-stop policy that facilitates finalizing all steps for establishing a company within only 48 hours. It also includes all infrastructure facilities such as roads, railways, tunnels, floating bridges, power stations and sweater desalination. Since the launch of the zone in April 2015 on an area of 461 square kilometers, 192 projects were implemented with investments that are worth $25 billion, in addition to $20 billion for investments and industrial projects currently in progress. Among them is the Tahrir Complex for Petrochemical Investments, a project with a cost of LE 200 billion, that offers direct and indirect working opportunities (48,000 jobs).
New Suez Canal
This project aims to reduce the transit time for vessels through the Suez Canal to make more profits. The construction phase took only 354 days with a cost of LE 20,417,000,000. The project consists of a new channel with a total length of 72 km., which led to an increase in revenues, creation of jobs and capacity of the Suez Canal to have 97 instead of 49 vessels, which is useful for the Suez Canal Economic Zone.
New Rafah City
After many attempts to protect the people living in Rafah city and the Sinai Peninsula from the tunnels that the terrorists use to transfer their weapons, the state decided to displace the people living in Rafah and offer them compensations to protect the area. As the state is willing to offer a decent life for the displaced persons, it immediately decided to establish the new Rafah city in October 2015, and the construction phase was concluded in April 2018. The total number of residence units reached 10,016 ones ranging from 120 to 300 square meters in 625 buildings, in addition to 400 Bedouin houses. The state also offered an integrated set of services, even better than those that existed in the old city, including shopping malls, nurseries, schools, sports and social clubs, cultural centers, recreational areas and youth centers. A police station, fire brigade, industrial zone and government offices were also established to serve the citizens. The project was concluded within two and a half years, occupying an area of 535 acres at a total cost of LE 1,000,380,000.
The establishment of the airport began in February 2018 for civil purposes in central Sinai, and it includes two corridors for civil aviation with a length of more than 3 kilometers and width of 40-60 meters. The airport also has 3 sub-links to link the civil corridor with the military one, having length of 2 km and 888 meters, 2 tarmacs for aircraft that can encompass up to 22 airbus planes and passenger lounge are of 4200 square meters to serve 200 passengers per hours. All facilities and utilities have also been implemented such as water, sewage, lighting and energy networks.
Saint Catherine Airport
Developing this airport aims to expand and upgrade the airport’s terminals, service buildings and halls on an area of more than 465 acres, with a cost of LE 1 billion. The first stage involves upgrading the efficiency of the main runway to a width of 45 meters, instead of 36 meters, and a length of 2600 meters, in addition to improving the quality and capacity of the asphalt pavement of the corridor. The project also aims to increase the capacity of the terminal as to include 650 passengers per hour on an area of 5558 square meters, create a parking area and making the airport’s tarmac prepared to have two aircrafts. The second phase includes constructing a new building that can host 900 passengers per hour on an area of 7000 square meters and tarmac with a capacity of 3 aircrafts, in addition to the construction of other services.
Ras Sidr International Airport
At a cost of LE 3 billion, the new airport will be constructed on basis of the BOT system on an area of 34 million square meters and a marina as part of a plan for tourism development in the area that surrounds Ras Sidr city and north of Oyoun Moussa across an area of 6 million square meters. The project aims to attract attention to Ras Sidr, especially for tourists visiting Sharm El Sheikh.
Suez Canal Tunnels
For many years, the movement of thousands of people and goods has been difficult in Sinai, which pushed the state to consider the tunnels project as a top priority since July 2016, and until it was finalized in May 2019. This step linked Sinai with the Nile Delta and ended all traffic problems in the ferries and small tunnels, as well as guaranteed an easier transfer of goods between the east and west of the Suez Canal.
The project includes five tunnels at a total cost of about LE 12 billion, including two tunnels in Ismailia, two in Port Said and Ahmed Hamdy tunnel in Suez. The maximum speed inside these tunnels is 60 kms/hour due to their large widths and the existence of two-way lanes. They are located at a depth of 53 to 70 meters and a length of 5820 meters in addition to many emergency rooms at a rate of every 250 meters and frequent crossroads at a rate of every 500 meters. It is worth noting that the project was established by 4 Egyptian companies and 2500 engineers, workers and technicians in less than 3 years, instead of 5 years as planned, due to the importance of the project for the Egyptian citizen in the Sinai.
Industrial Development in Sinai
The 2030 plan of Egypt tackled the issue of industrial development in Sinai and placing it on the industrial map of the country through establishing a number of factories in order to use the natural resources in Sinai. The top concern was to integrate Sinai in the existing economic entity that encompasses the other parts of Egypt in terms of developmental activities taking place in the Suez Canal axis. This matter included the following projects:
- The implementation of 4 projects, including the infrastructure and the basic area for services in Bir al-Abed and the second phase of developing Al-Arish factory for cement through establishing the third and fourth line of production with a capacity of 3.7 million tons per year, bringing the total capacity of the factory to 6.9 million tons per year. A wholesale market in Al-Arish will also be established on an area of 38.8 feddans, selling vegetables, fruits, fish, meat and poultry. Moreover, a complex for the production of marble will be established in Jafjafah, carrying 4 production lines, with a capacity of 3 million per year.
- The project also includes an industrial zone of 63 million square meters, fish ponds in the east of Port Said on an area of 19351 feddans, with a total of 5906 basins, a fishing lake in the east of Port Said on an area of 10 feddans and a fishing port in Rmana.
Urban Development in Sinai
The urban structure in Sinai is composed of 16 cities, 95 central villages, 271 villages that are affiliated to the latter and hundreds of Bedouin communities. Many efforts are currently being exerted to settle another 3 million people. This policy is based on a number of pillars, including the agricultural (northern), free trade, agricultural and industrial (western) that will be linked to the Suez Canal axis and its economic zone. The third axis is the Gulf of Suez (mining, oil and tourism), the Gulf of Aqaba (tourism) and the middle axis (small businesses, mineral and animal husbandry). The total cost is LE 20.8 billion of which 16 billion will be allocated for the construction of about 700 thousand residential units, and LE 2.8 billion as the cost of utilities such as sanitation and drinking water. LE 2 billion will be allocated for the preparation of industrial areas.
– Housing projects include the implementation of 5 projects with a total of 80,995 housing units and 400 Bedouin houses, including the construction of new urban communities, such as the new city of Rafah, the city of Salam or the new “Bir al-Abd” in East Port Said, and the new city of Ismailia. These cities, as well as others, will serve as the foundation for development in Sinai.
– The Ministry of Housing, through the Central Agency for Reconstruction, will implement a number of Bedouin, agricultural communities through 14 developmental communities that include agricultural and fishing activities for the residents of the governorate. Also, 7 new Bedouin communities will be established by the armed forces. almost 70% of the project has been completed. The governorate seeks to develop El-Tor as its food basket.
Egypt is giving great attention to investments in education in Sinai through 46 projects that tackle upgrading schools and educational departments in Sinai. The educational system in Sinai can be considered as a better one than that of Cairo, for the number of classrooms in Sinai increased by 2.8% to 4927 in 2017 compared to 4793 in 2016. This is a higher figure than that of classrooms in Cairo, which reflects the interest of the state to improve the quality of education in Sinai. The number of students in a classroom is 28, which is 30% less than the number of students per class in Cairo, which is 40 students per semester. The following table shows the data on the number of classrooms and students per class.
As for projects that Egypt is implementing in terms of education Sinai, they include the following:
– Sinai University in Al-Arish, which represents a highly successful model and includes a number of faculties that are currently growing. Sinai also has private institutions that can serve 4,000 students, and new territories will be provided for the establishment of new private universities, especially in Sharm El-Sheikh.
– The University of Al-Arish, which also has a number of faculties, focuses on issues that are relevant to the people of Sinai. It started with a faculty for education as a nucleus of AL-Trr University in Southern Sinai.
– The creation of the University of Salman bin Abdel Aziz, and it has three branches: 6 faculties in Al-Tor, two faculties in Sharm El-Sheikh and 3 faculties in Ras Sidr. It has 10 acres for student residences, in addition to the necessary lands for developmental projects in the governorate. The university is currently working on a partnership with a foreign university.
Sinai is characterized by a high level of health services in comparison to other parts of the country. There are a number of large hospitals that were established by the armed forces in Al-Arish and Sharm El-Sheikh. The national project for the development of Sinai seeks to increase the number of beds in hospitals to 6000 ones and creation of 55 public hospitals—to be affiliated to the Ministry of Health— to cope with the expected increase in population. Also 23 private hospitals will be constructed.
The health services in Sinai are better than those of Cairo and Alexandria. Sinai has an ambulance vehicle for each 5100 people, while Cairo offers only a single vehicle for every 46,000 people. Alexandria also has one vehicle for every 109,000 people. Sinai also has a medical unit for every 23,000 people, while Cairo offers a single for every 26,000 people. Alexandria has a single vehicle for every 39,200 people.
Despite the outstanding figures about health services in Sinai, the state continues to implement 14 projects, including 3 hospitals, a site for storage of drugs and improving the conditions of 10 hospitals with a total of 400 beds.
Agriculture and Water
In addition to grazing and fishing, agriculture is the major, traditional activity for the people living in the Sinai Peninsula. The cultivated area is estimated at 175 thousand feddans, of which 173.5 thousand feddans in northern Sinai, and only 1500 in the south, and the cultivated area offers 160 thousand tons of vegetables and fruit in addition to 410 thousand tons of grain, and estimated the livestock about 265 thousand head of sheep and goats. As for the availability of water in Sinai, which is the main element of development, there are a number of major projects aimed at causing a radical change in the water resources in Sinai through the transfer of water from the Nile through three basic projects:
– The Peace Canal Project: This includes the reclamation and cultivation of roughly 400,000 feddans on the Nile through the canal, which crosses the Suez Canal at Suhara at 28 km south of Port Said, and offers about 4 billion cubic meters of water annually.
– Suhara Al-Daberswar: It will cover 77,000 feddans to the east of the Suez Canal, which transfers about 420 million cubic meters of Nile water to Sinai annually.
-Suhara sediment under the new Suez Canal with a length of 400 meters, to transport 1.2 million cubic meters of Suez canal water to the east Sinai, as well as 5,000 acres of agricultural land in the eastern New Ismailia, in addition to the implementation of 11 projects to benefit from water resources in agriculture with a capacity of 6 million cubic meters of water.
– The National Project for the Development of Sinai: It aims at planting 250 thousand feddans after the implementation of Upper Nile projects, reclamation and cultivation of about 65 thousand additional feddans on local water sources and reclamation and cultivation of about 7 thousand feddans on the groundwater in central Sinai.
It also includes the reclamation of about 8 thousand feddans on the groundwater in South Sinai (Wadi Feran – Malha – the plain of the bottom – Grindel) and reclamation of about 50 thousand feddans on flood waters through the construction of storage dams in areas of the valleys of brook, Arish, Aqaba and Wuter.
1- A contract has been signed for the implementation of the wastewater treatment project in Bahr al-Bakr at an estimated cost of $ 1billion. It is one of the major projects being implemented in coordination between the Engineering Authority of the Armed Forces and the Ministry of Housing, as well as preparing for the entry of investors into a number of other projects.
2- In the field of water supply, 49 projects have been implemented, including desalination and purification plants, 20 of which have a total production capacity of 450 thousand cubic meters. In the area of sanitation, 5 projects are implemented in the cities of Sheikh Zowaid, Bir Al Abed, Al-Hassana and Nakhl Al-Tur. This is in addition to applying the experience of Bedouin agricultural communities from the Ministry of Housing through 14 development communities.Under the supervision of the armed forces, it will be the food basket of the area.
1- Egypt is currently implementing 6 projects for improving the efficiency of power stations in Rafah, Al-Sheikh Zowayed and Al-Arish.
2- The process of developing the efficiency of internal electricity for the second phase was concluded in the vocational zone in Al-Masaeed in Al-Arish through the Ministry of International Cooperation and the Sinai Reconstruction Authority with a cost of LE 12.8 million.
Road projects represent the infrastructure for economic and social development in Sinai, as well as being the communication means that allows investors to increase their activities at this part of Egypt. Below is a number of the most important projects in this manner.
1- Construction of 24 roads with a total length of 1922 km.
2- Implementation of 14 national projects, including tunnels below the Suez Canal, including two tunnels in north of Ismailia, two tunnels south of Port Said, upgrading an existing bridge above the Suez Canal, establishing a new bridge above the Suez Canal (640 meter in length, 11.2 meters in in width and 65 meters in height), developing Al-Arish International Airport and establishing an air control tower and two corridors and linking them to existing corridors.
3- Development projects in east of Port Said, including the implementation of marinas with a length of 5 km and width of 500 meters, and the establishment of trading areas.
4- Implementation of 19 projects in the fields of sports, cultural, social and recreational facilities.
5- Implementation of 76 projects in the youth and sports sector at a cost of LE 125,169,000.
6- Implementation of projects in the culture sector at a cost of LE 30.9 million.
7- Implementation of Bir al-Abed complex with a cost of LE 10 million
8- Implementation of 36 projects in the field of Awqaf with a cost of LE 22,400,000.
9- Implementation of 55 projects in social solidarity with a cost of 556,044,000.
10- Implementation of 7 projects in manpower sector at a cost of LE 981, 000.
11- Implementation of 3 projects by the National Population Council with a cost of LE 218,000.
In addition to these projects and the money that the state pumped to implement them, Egypt has also worked on preserving the lives of citizens in Northern Sinai to contain the repercussions of the terrorist operations that targets the lives of both Muslims and Copts. lives. Muslims and Copts. For example, due to the terrorist attack that targeted the mosque of Al-Rawda in Bir Al-Abed and killed 310 citizens during the Friday prayers, the state sent hundreds of emergency persons and state officials to meet with the family members of the victims.
The law enforcement forces also reinforced their presence to protect citizens from the danger of the terrorist groups that participated in the attack, while chasing them in hidden in the desert. The state also paid compensation to the citizens that is worth by 200,000 Egyptian pounds per family of each martyr and 50,000 Egyptian pounds for every injured citizen. The state also provided psychological support for the people of Bir al-Abd in particular and the people of Sinai in general through reopening Al-Rawdah mosque one week after the attack and broadcasting the Friday Prayers on TV. The same steps were taken following terrorist attacks that targeted the Christian community. The largest and most dangerous one was that that took place in Al-Arish in January and February 2017, leading to the death of 8 Christians and the destruction of their properties. Such attacks led to dozens of Christian families living in Arish to choose displacement in several parts of Egypt. The state has facilitated the transfer of Egyptian Christian citizens wishing to move to the governorates of Egypt, in addition to transferring their jobs to their new areas of residence, and provided hotel accommodation as temporary residences. Egypt also offered financial support for each family and enrolled their sons and daughters in schools and universities and paid their tuition fees.
Furthermore, with an increase in criminal and terrorist operations along the borders between the Egyptian and Palestinian Rafah cities—taking advantage of tunnels— the country was faced a threat to its national security. The country decided to transfer the citizens 14 kilometers west of the borderline to create a safe zone between Egypt and Gaza Strip. The government also provided a compensation for those who were displaced in a manner that is consistent with the properties or lands they hand. Most of the people favored this arrangement. The total compensation paid by the state reached LE 750 million. This situation happened again after a terrorist attack on Al-Arish airport, for the state had to evacuate the agricultural areas surrounding it to create a 5-kilometer, safe area around the airport. The state also offered compensations, which reached LE 200 million.