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Report Sinai militias have SAMs closes Israeli tourist airport

Special to WorldTribune.com

TEL AVIV — Israel’s military has closed an international airport
amid fear of a major rocket strike from Egypt.

The military ordered the temporary shutdown of Eilat International
Airport, a leading tourist destination.
800px-Eilat's_AirportOn Aug. 8, the airport was closed for two hours amid the threat of rocket attacks from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.

Officials said Sinai militias have acquired shoulder-fired air defense missiles, including the SAM-7. Eilat has been struck several times by surface-to-surface rocket fire, the last time on July 4.

“This was because of security assessments,” the military said.

Officials said the closure stemmed from a decision by Chief of Staff Lt.
Gen. Benny Gantz. They said Gantz was informed by Military Intelligence of
an imminent surface-to-air missile attack on the airport.

Flights to Eilat airport were directed to the nearby air force base at
Uvda. Officials said at least eight flights were redirected.

Eilat airport was deemed a likely target of Al Qaida-aligned militias
in Sinai. In July, the Israel Air Force deployed an Iron Dome missile and
rocket defense system outside the port city.

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