Monday, 11 December, 2017

Egypt mosque attack leaves at least 200 dead in Sinai Peninsula

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE The carnage left at least 305 people dead and 128 more worshippers injured
June Sullivan | 25 November, 2017, 01:34

At least 50 people have been killed after militants attacked a mosque in the north of Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, the Sky News Arabia TV channel reported on Friday. The affiliate also is believed to have been behind the 2016 downing of a Russian passenger jet that killed 226 people.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has vowed to avenge victims of the brutal attack in the country's restive Sinai Peninsula, one of worst terror attacks in the nation's recent history.

"This evil terrorist attack will only make us more determined, solid, and strong to fight against terrorism", he said.

The extremists attacked the al-Rawdah mosque in the town of Bir al-Abd, 40 km (25 miles) from the North Sinai provincial capital of el-Arish, opening fire from four off-road vehicles on worshippers inside during the sermon, three police officers said.

Dozens of bloodied bodies wrapped up in sheets were laid across the mosque floor, according to images circulating on social media.

It is the first time a mosque is targeted by militants in Egypt.

The terror attack has drawn widespread local and global condemnation as cowardly act of terrorism.

Sheikh Sulieman Ghanem 75 receives medical treatment at Suez Canal University hospital in Ismailia Egypt after he was injured during the attack

The Sinai branch is one of Islamic State's surviving branches following the collapse of its self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq after military defeats by US-backed forces.

Earlier in the day, Trump described the attack as "horrible and cowardly" and its victims as "innocent and defenseless worshipers".

"Strongly condemn the barbaric terrorist attack on a place of worship in Egypt".

Security forces have been battling militants in northern Sinai for years, but attacks to date have focused on military and police assets, although assassinations of individuals IS considers government spies or religious heretics are not uncommon.

"Justice will be served against all those who participated, contributed, supported, funded, or instigated this cowardly attack", Sisi said in a statement.

"The world can not tolerate terrorism, we must defeat them militarily and discredit the extremist ideology that forms the basis of their existence!" the president said.

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