CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian security officials and residents say the military has demolished 13 homes along the Gaza Strip border in the Sinai peninsula as a buffer zone is considered to reduce weapons smuggling and illegal crossings by militants.
Northern Sinai government officials said Sunday the military envisions creating a house-free zone with no trees 500 meters (1640 feet) wide and 10 kilometers (6 miles) long starting at the Rafah border crossing. The officials said the homes with tunnels underneath them were bulldozed over the last 10 days as a test of the idea.
They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media. The Egyptian military has closed much of the once-bustling tunnel system, but some remain at the 15-kilometer (9-mile) stretch of border.
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