General: Airstrikes Killed Leader, 45 Other ISIS Fighters
According to Egyptian military spokesman Brig. Gen. Mohammed Samir, the Egyptian military killed the leader of ISIS’ Sinai Peninsula affiliate, a group which calls itself Sinai Province. The attacks were carried out against al-Arish, and the Egyptian military claims the leader, and 45 other ISIS fighters, were slain.
Abu Duaa al-Ansari has been sought by the Egyptian military junta for some time, both because of his leadership position within the ISIS affiliate, and because he was accused of being behind the bombing of a Russian passenger plane at Sham al-Sheikh back in October, killing over 200 people.
Initially called Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, the group became an ISIS affiliate in late 2014, after over a year of fighting against a post-coup invasion of the Sinai Peninsula by the junta. The group has not expanded beyond the Sinai, but has remained a significant force to be reckoned with there.
The report comes just two days after the affiliate issued a video threatening to conquer both Israel and Rome in the near future. Israeli officials have suggested recent strikes in the Sinai Peninsula themselves, done at the behest of the Egyptian military.
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