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Egypt Arrests Israeli Guards

Egyptian officials arrested four Israeli guards at sea as they made their way to protect commercial vessels in the Red Sea.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 9/9/2011, 9:34 AM

Boat (illustrative)
Boat (illustrative)
Flash 90

Egyptian naval officers arrested four Israeli security guards this week as they made their way across the Red Sea to the Straits of Tiran. Several other crew members of the Israeli ship were arrested as well.

The group was interrogated for one day, and released Thursday following the intervention of the Israeli Foreign Ministry. The affair was kept under wraps until they were safely back in Israel on Friday morning.

Egyptian officials said the group was arrested after guards raised suspicion by throwing their weapons overboard. Their action led the Egyptian crew to believe they were terrorists, officials said.

The four guards were licensed to carry weapons. They are employed as guards for commercial ships in the Straits of Tiran and the Indian Ocean.

Israeli Foreign Ministry officials said the incident was a misunderstanding.

Egypt is still holding Ilan Grapel, a dual American-Israeli citizen who was arrested in June while touring Egypt and accused of spying on behalf of the Mossad.