Egypt orders suspected Libyan militant, 14 others be held over desert attack

Elias Hubbard
November 17, 2017

Meanwhile, Egypt's armed forces said Thursday they have killed three "high-level" suspected militants and arrested 74 others in sweeps targeting militant groups in the northern Sinai Peninsula in recent days.

The Egyptian Ministry of Interior said yesterday that the perpetrators of the attack against police forces in the Wahat area, on the outskirts of Giza province, last month had been trained in Libya.

The security crackdown in the nearby mountainous areas around the Western Desert near Al-Wahat highway left 15 militants dead. One policeman was kidnapped, but was later freed by security forces.

The Libyan who was caught is called Abdel-Rahim Mohamed Abdullah Al-Mismary, and he lived in the Libyan city of Derna, Egyptian police said in a statement.

They had sneaked into Egypt to establish a training camp in the desert area of Al-Wahat as they planned to launch attacks against Christian worship places as well as vital areas in Egypt.

According to the statement, several members of the group were also behind an attack on Egyptian Copts in May, when gunmen ambushed a bus of pilgrims in Minya, killing 30 people. It was an umbrella organization of Derna-based Islamist factions opposed to the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group and the Libyan army, led by Khalifa Haftar.

Egypt sees Libya's stability necessary for maintaining its own national security in order to protect its western border and uproot the cross-border terrorism.

The Egyptian military and police have killed hundreds of militants and arrested a similar number of suspects as part of the country's anti-terror war declared by President Sisi, the army chief then, following Morsi's removal.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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