Arish, Al

Arish, Al äl ärēsh´ [key], town (1986 pop. 67,337), NE Egypt, in the Sinai peninsula, on the Mediterranean Sea. It is a fishing port and a military and administrative center; since the 1980s it has also developed a tourist industry. In 1118, King Baldwin I of Jerusalem died in Al Arish on the way back from his Egyptian campaign. In 1800, during the venture of Napoleon I in Egypt, the French signed a convention in the city by which they were to evacuate the country. The British did not ratify the convention, and fighting resumed. Israeli troops briefly held Al Arish during the 1956 Arab-Israeli war and occupied the town in the 1967 war. It reverted back to Egyptian hands when Israel returned the Sinai as a result of the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty (1979).

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