Much like Iran did late last year when it allegedly recruited Manssor Arbabsiar to perform a terrorist act in the U.S., Tehran has been caught plotting an attack with three Egyptian citizens along the Suez Canal.Avi Issacharoff at Ha’artz reports Egyptian security forces learned of the attack, planned on an Israeli ship, and arrested Suleiman Razek Abdul-Razek and Salameh Ahmed Salameh Saturday.
The two reportedly received their instructions from Iranian agents, and recruited Mohammed Zakri to help with the plot, in return for 50 million Egyptian pounds — about $8.3 million U.S.
Issacharoff’s sources told him they have no proof of the two men’s involvement other than the fact it was reported at all. Israel has been warning that Iran is setting up terrorist cells in Egypt for just such an attack.
Despite allowing Iranian warships to pass through the Suez on their way to Syria a few months ago, Egypt prohibited any attacks on Israeli targets from within its borders.
A Jerusalem official told Ha’artz:
“We can see signs that Iran is building a terror infrastructure throughout Sinai,” he said. The official added that although Israel has responded to every Egyptian request to beef up its forces in Sinai, no significant Egyptian operation has taken place in Sinai since the Egyptian revolution last year.
“It must be remembered that a host of Palestinian organisations are using Sinai to carry out attacks,” the official said, adding that since ousted Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi’s fall, Libya has become a huge arms depot, where weapons are transferred to Egypt and then the Gaza Strip.
There has been growing concern that Israel will strike out its own against Iran’s nuclear facilities and drag the U.S. into a costly, and bloody, conflict.
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