Daily Israel Report

Taba Terror: Egypt Refuses Entry to Israeli Ambulances

Egypt won't allow Israeli MDA teams to Taba, where three tourists and a driver are dead and 33 are wounded after a terror bombing.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 2/16/2014, 7:22 PM

Egyptian soldier stands guard at the Taba crossing between Egypt and Israel
Egyptian soldier stands guard at the Taba crossing between Egypt and Israel
AFP photo

Egypt has refused to allow Israeli Magen David Adom ambulances and emergency teams to Taba, where four people are dead and 33 injured after a terror bombing Sunday. Three of the dead are tourists from Korea and one is a bus driver.

An Egyptian security official told Egyptian newspaper Al-Youm a-Saba that Egypt is on the highest alert following the attack. The Taba terminal has been reopened to Israeli tourists who are in Sinai and wish to return to Israel.

Some of the people injured in the terror attack had still not been treated, several hours after the attack, yet Israeli ambulances that could have helped them were stranded in Eilat due to Egypt's refusal to let them in.

Despite this, MDA Director Eli Bin has instructed MDA teams in Eilat to maintain a state of high alert, and all of the city's ambulances and intensive care vehicles remained manned Sunday evening.

"MDA is prepared to grant any assistance required to the victims of the attack, and we are preparing to take in the casualties at the Taba terminal,” Bin told the press. “MDA continues to be in touch with the Foreign Ministry, IDF, Red Cross officials in Israel and Geneva and other relevant elements, in order to treat the injured to the extent that this is required.”

The attack at Taba comes as Egypt continues its crackdown on Sinai terrorism and on Gaza’s Hamas rulers.

Egyptian border forces reportedly destroyed 10 tunnels and seven homes in the Sinai Saturday, as part of new campaign to create a buffer zone along the border with Gaza that would extend 500 meters in some places.

The campaign began with a military operation in the border town of Rafiah, where tunnels leading into Gaza were targeted in the neighborhoods of al-Brahma, al-Sarsuriya, Salahudeen, al-Helwat, and Zoraba, an Egyptian security source told Ma’an.

The security source added that the tunnels were destroyed and the homes they were located in were subsequently blown up.

He explained that the move was part of a wider campaign to set up a buffer zone along the border with Gaza that would extend 300 meters in populated areas and 500 meters in open areas.