In one of the deadliest single attacks in Egyptian history, ISIS attackers have carried out a major strike in Bir al-Abed, in the Sinai Peninsula, targeting a Sufi mosque, killing at least 305 people and wounding 128 others.
The attack started with a major bombing, which killed many and also sparked a panicked run for the exits. At this point, dozens more gunmen showed up in off-road vehicles, opening fire on the worshipers and killing many more.
In addition to killing hundreds, the attackers reportedly set fire to many of the vehicles it the parking lot in an attempt to try to block ambulance access into the area. The death toll is expected to rise further.
Egypt’s military junta is promising a “brute force” retaliation, which is in keeping with their reaction to previous ISIS attacks in Sinai. In practice, this has often meant destroying neighborhoods labeled “ISIS hideouts,” and killing all within, though repeated such purges seem to have had little impact on the ISIS affiliate’s effectiveness.
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