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Last Updated: Monday, 24 April 2006, 21:42 GMT 22:42 UK
Egypt militants target tourists
By Sebastian Usher
BBC world media correspondent

The bombings in Dahab are the latest in a series of attacks in the past two years by Islamic militants on tourist targets in the Sinai peninsula in Egypt.

Bombed mall
The Sharm el-Sheikh attacks killed at least 64 in July 2005
In October, 2004, the Red Sea resorts of Taba and Ras Shitan were bombed. Thirty-four people were killed - mostly Israelis - and more than 100 were wounded.

The attacks shook Egypt and its vital tourism industry to the core.

It had been seven years since the last major attack on foreigners when gunmen killed more than 60 tourists at Luxor.

The 2004 attacks were soon followed in April 2005 by several attacks in Cairo.

Threat

Then in July, near-simultaneous bombings targeted the most popular Red Sea resort, Sharm el-Sheikh.

At least 64 people died, most of them tourists. The Egyptian authorities arrested many suspects after these attacks and a number have been charged.

But it is still unclear who exactly is behind them. Officials say that militants from the Sinai were responsible.

Other reports suggest links to international Islamic militant groups - under the general umbrella of al-Qaeda.

Amidst the uncertainty, one thing is clear - the widespread repression of Islamic militants in Egypt in the 1990s has only partially succeeded in stamping out the threat of Islamic violence.

A new generation of militants has emerged - their numbers may well be smaller than in the past, but their ability to strike remains potent.





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