Two members of the Union of Sinai Tribes were killed and a third wounded on Sunday in what local and medical sources who spoke to Mada Masr said was “an internal conflict” that broke out at the tribal union’s center in Sheikh Zuwayed, North Sinai.
Two bodies were received by medics at the Arish Hospital on Sunday, said a medical source who spoke on condition of anonymity, while a third person was admitted in critical condition following a gunshot wound.
The tribal union released a statement on Tuesday announcing the death of two tribe members without disclosing any details about the circumstances leading to their deaths.
Sunday’s shooting took place at a site belonging to the tribal union in Abu Tawila, North Sinai, which acts as the union’s headquarters and a base for its main founder and donor, businessman Ibrahim al-Argany, said two local sources speaking to Mada Masr on condition of anonymity — one from Sheikh Zuwayed and the other from the Roumailat tribe.
A dispute between members of the union escalated, said the sources, until a Roumailat tribe member fired gunshots that killed a union member from the Rishat tribe, another from Sheikh Zuwayed and wounded a third union member from the Ismailia governorate.
Elders from the Rishat tribe, said one of the local sources, have asked the union to hand over the Roumailat member responsible for the killing, a member of the Forsan al-Haitham (Haitham’s Knights) tribal group.
The Union of Sinai Tribes is mainly composed of Tarabin tribe members as well as members from other assorted groups. These include people from tribal groups such as Forsan al-Haitham, in which some of the Roumailat tribe are active, as well as from the Arab tribal group, which is primarily made up of Sawarka, Rishat and Akour tribe members, along with some families from the city of Arish.
The union, created in 2015, was the only armed civilian group operating in Sinai until 2022 and fought alongside the Armed Forces over the years of military campaigns against militant activity in the governorates of Sinai.