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Egypt arrests 2 al-Qaida-inspired militants

By Ashraf Sweilam

Associated Press

Published: Monday, Nov. 14 2011 6:16 a.m. MST

EL-ARISH, Egypt — A senior Egyptian security official says police have arrested two leading members of an al-Qaida-inspired group in the Sinai peninsula a day after the group's leader was arrested.

The group was behind attacks on Egyptian police and on a gas pipeline transporting fuel to Israel and Jordan.

The official says Abdel-Karim Mohammed Ahmed and Ahmed Salem Awwad were arrested at dawn Monday at their hideout on the outskirts of the northern Sinai town of el-Arish. He spoke on condition of anonymity in line with orders barring him from being identified publicly.

The group launched a campaign this year under the name al-Qaida in the Sinai calling for the establishment of an Islamic emirate. Security in Egypt has taken a hit since the February ouster of President Hosni Mubarak.

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