Last Updated: Sun Jun 17, 2012 15:30 pm (KSA) 12:30 pm (GMT)

Rockets fired on southern Israel ‘linked to Egypt vote’

Israeli sappers on Saturday recovered the debris of two rockets, both of which landed in the far south of the country, which they believe were fired from Sinai. (File photo)
Israeli sappers on Saturday recovered the debris of two rockets, both of which landed in the far south of the country, which they believe were fired from Sinai. (File photo)

The two rockets, apparently fired from Sinai, which landed near towns in the deep south of Israel were linked to the Egyptian presidential election, a senior Israeli security source told AFP on Sunday.

“The rockets fired at Israel over the weekend were a one-off and carried out by those who wanted to influence the Egyptian presidential election,” he said referring to militant groups in the Sinai.

Israeli sappers on Saturday recovered the debris of two rockets, both of which landed near towns and villages in the far south of the country, police and the army said.

Police said they responded to two reports of explosions at around 1:00 am on Saturday (2200 GMT on Friday), one in the Negev desert and the second in the Arava desert not far from the Red Sea resort town of Eilat.

Unnamed Israeli defense officials quoted by Israel’s Haaretz newspaper on Sunday claimed that Bedouin militants were behind the rocket fire under orders from Gaza’s Hamas rulers, following a request from the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohammed Mursi is one of two candidates who are fighting for the Egyptian leadership as the country votes in a presidential run-off this weekend.

But senior defense ministry official Amos Gilad ruled out any involvement of the Muslim Brotherhood in an interview with Israel’s army radio.

“The Muslim Brotherhood wants to change the face of the Middle East and doesn’t get involved in attacks,” he said.

“Many extremist elements operate in Sinai with the support of Iran and Hezbollah, and we are investigating who was behind the firing,” he said.

“We want to preserve peaceful relations with Egypt. It is in our interest and also in theirs.”

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