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In Gaza meet, Hamas, IS in Sinai said to discuss cooperation

Top Islamic State commander reportedly promises to aid smuggling at Egyptian border in exchange for advanced weapons

Hamas fighters take part in an anti-Israel rally in the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah, February 26, 2016. (AFP/Said Khatib)
Hamas fighters take part in an anti-Israel rally in the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah, February 26, 2016. (AFP/Said Khatib)

Top Islamic State commander in Sinai Shadi al-Menii met with Hamas officials in Gaza Thursday in order to discuss cooperation between the two terrorist groups, according to a Channel 2 report.

Al-Menii, who belongs to one of the Bedouin tribes in the north of the Sinai Peninsula, fled to the Gaza Strip in May of 2015 after his organization attacked a military base and killed an Egyptian soldier, Haaretz reported. A bounty worth one million Egyptian pounds was placed on his head.

According to Channel 2, al-Menii’s branch of IS in Sinai were to help Hamas operatives smuggle arms into the strip via tunnels in return for sophisticated weapons.

Israeli officials have often claimed that there is a quiet cooperation between Hamas and IS in Sinai. In July 2015 former defense minister Moshe Ya’alon said Hamas had joined forces with IS terrorists fighting the Egyptian army in Sinai, Haaretz reported.

“There exists a cooperation between Hamas in Gaza and IS in Sinai,” Ya’alon said.

“In the [Gaza] Strip, Hamas is fighting IS offshoots, but on the other hand, [Hamas] is cooperating with IS in the Sinai Peninsula in their offensive against the Egyptian army.

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