The Egyptian military says that it is prepared to launch strikes in the Gaza Strip if Palestinian militants continue to attacks troops stationed in the contentious Sinai region, according to reports.
“The Egyptian army has established a precautionary plan for military intervention in the Gaza Strip,” according to the Palestinian Ma’an News Agency.
Egyptian military officials have already drawn up a list of potential targets in Gaza, according to the report.
“Egyptian reconnaissance planes had entered the Gaza Strip’s airspace and examined a number of locations in Rafah and Khan Younis to be targeted if military attacks against Egyptian troops intensify in Sinai,” the report stated, quoting Egyptian military officials.
Egyptian aircraft could also go after suspect vehicles in Gaza, according to Ma’an:
Egyptian aircraft could also target vehicles which travel across the border area delivering smuggled goods, sources added. More smuggling tunnels could also be destroyed, and sources highlighted that “all options are open.” […]
Certain militant groups in the Gaza Strip, according to Egyptian officials, are “behind the violence” in Sinai, including Ansar al-Sunna, which has ties to Hamas, as well as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, among others.
The Egyptian military has long been at odds with the terror group Hamas, which rules Gaza and uses an underground tunnel system to smuggle weapons across the border.
The Egyptian military has increasingly cracked down on these smuggling operations since deposing former President Mohamed Morsi, who was close with Hamas.