On August 4, 2014, the Suez Canal contract was awarded to the Saudi Arabia branch of the global engineering firm Dar al-Handasah, in partnership with the Egyptian Armed Forces Engineering Authority. Fourteen partners were originally invited to bid. Among them were the state-run Arab Contractors, James Cubitt and Partners, and the global management-consulting firm McKinsey & Company. The project will raise the canal’s revenue to $13 billion from $5 billion. President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi says the armed forces will provide military supervision for security reasons.
Also on this date, Egyptian military forces conducted a raid in the North Sinai as part of a larger operation to crack down on extremists in the wake of former President Mohammed Morsi’s ouster. The raid targeted a militant hideout; Egyptian forces killed 11 and destroyed three vans, eight motorbikes, and three tunnels, which were reportedly used to smuggle arms between Egypt and Gaza. Since the crackdown on militant groups in North Sinai began, more than 1,000 have been killed and several thousand arrested.