Egyptian general and presidential frontrunner Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the man largely responsible for dethroning the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, asked the United States for help in fighting his country’s battle against Islamist extremism.
“We are fighting a war against terrorism,” Sisi said in an exclusive interview with Reuters.
Sisi asked the United States to help him fight together against a common enemy. “We need American support to fight terrorism, we need American equipment to use to combat terrorism,” he said.
The General did not hesitate on his position on the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt, which was signed in 1979 between former Egyptian President Anwar Al Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. Sisi declared, “We respected it (the peace treaty) and we will respect it. The Israeli people know this… The question of whether we would be committed to the peace treaty is over with.”
Sisi was largely concerned with getting Egypt’s economic house in order. “We have to admit that the economic situation in Egypt is difficult, and not just over the last three years. Egyptians were aspiring to a more stable life than the reality we are living in. More than 50 percent of the Egyptian people suffer from poverty. There is a lot of unemployment,” said Sisi.
General Sisi worried that the Sinai peninsula has become a breeding ground for terrorism. “The Egyptian army is undertaking major operations in the Sinai so it is not transformed into a base for terrorism that will threaten its neighbors and make Egypt unstable. If Egypt is unstable then the entire region is unstable,” said Sisi.
An unnamed Egyptian military officer recently reaffirmed general Sisi’s worries, telling Breitbart News that Muslim Brotherhood-backed group Ansar Bait al-Maqdis has largely been behind the increase in terror activity in the Sinai. The group’s inspiration, training, and funding is believed to be resourced within Muslim Brotherhood and Al-Qaeda linked groups in the region.
The source told Breitbart News that following the second Egyptian revolution that resulted in the replacement of the Muslim Brotherhood Morsi regime in Egypt, General Sisi ramped up efforts to combat the increase in terror in the Sinai. After Morsi’s fall, Sisi declared he would carry out an operation to get rid of the MB and AQ-backed terrorists in the Sinai. Egypt cooperated closely with Israeli forces to eradicate the Islamist extremist threats. However, the threat still remains serious and prevalent.
The source told Breitbart news Ansar Bait al-Maqdis has elite military training and shouldn’t be taken lightly. He believed they were still very well equipped through their weapons trafficking network with other terrorist groups in the region.