Egyptian mosque attack death toll climbs to 305

mosque attack

The death toll in Friday’s terrorist attack on a mosque in Egypt’s northern Sinai region has surpassed 300, including 27 children.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el Sisi has vowed to retaliate with brute force for the attack on Al Rawdah mosque that left 305 dead and 128 injured.

“What is happening is an attempt to stop us from our efforts in the fight against terrorism,” Sisi said in a televised address. “The armed forces and the police will avenge our martyrs and restore security and stability with the utmost force.”

Hours after the massacre, the military initiated airstrikes on terrorist locations around Bir al-Abed, about 25 miles west of North Sinai’s main city Al-Arish, where weapons, ammunition were reportedly stocked. Several vehicles used in the attack had been located and bombed, an army spokesperson said.

‘Children were screaming’

Witnesses told the Associated Press of people jumping out of windows, a stampede in a corridor leading to the restrooms and of children screaming in horror. Some spoke of their narrow escape from a certain death, others of families that lost all or most of their male members.

The militants were shouting “Allahu akbar” (“God is great”) and the children were screaming, Mansour said.

Abdallah Abdel Nasser, 14, receives medical treatment at Suez Canal University hospital in Ismailia, Egypt, Friday, Nov. 24, 2017, after he was in injured during an attack on a mosque. Militants attacked a crowded mosque during Friday prayers in the Sinai Peninsula, setting off explosives, spraying worshippers with gunfire and killing more than 200 people in the deadliest ever attack by Islamic extremists in Egypt. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

Abdallah Abdel Nasser, 14, receives medical treatment at Suez Canal University hospital in Ismailia, Egypt  (AP)

“I knew I was injured but I was in a situation that was much scarier than being wounded. I was only seconds away from a certain death,” he said. As the shooting took place, many of the worshippers recited their final prayers, he added.

Friday’s attack targeted a mosque frequented by Sufis, members of a mystic movement within Islam. Although no one has claimed responsibility for the attack, Islamic militants, including the local affiliate of the Islamic State group, consider Sufis heretics because of their less literal interpretations of the faith. IS-affiliated groups have targeted Sufis in the past.

Egypt has been in a state of emergency since April. The military and security forces have already been waging a tough campaign against militants in the towns, villages and mountains of Sinai. Across the country, thousands have been arrested in a crackdown on suspected terrorists as well as dissenters and critics, raising concern about human rights violations.

Deadly bombings

Seeking to spread the violence, militants over the past year have carried out deadly bombings on churches in the capital of Cairo and other cities, killing dozens of Christians. The IS affiliate is also believed to be behind the 2016 downing of a Russian passenger jet that killed 226 people over Sinai.

Islamic militants stepped up their campaign of violence in northern Sinai after the military ousted the elected but divisive Islamist Mohammed Morsi from power in 2013 and launched a fierce crackdown on his Muslim Brotherhood group.

Damaged vehicles are seen after a bomb exploded at Al Rawdah mosque in Bir Al-Abed, Egypt November 25, 2017. REUTERS/Mohamed Soliman TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY - RC1DEB6A42A0

Damaged vehicles are seen after a bomb exploded at Al Rawdah mosque in Bir Al-Abed, Egypt  (REUTERS)

The result has been a long, grinding conflict centered on el-Arish and nearby villages and towns. The militants have been unable to control territory, but the military and security forces have also been unable to bring security, as the extremists continuously carry out surprise attacks, mostly targeting outposts and convoys.

The attacks have largely focused on military and police, killing hundreds, although exact numbers are unclear as journalists and independent investigators are banned from the area. The militants have also assassinated individuals the group considers to be spies for the government or religious heretics. Egypt has also faced attacks by militants in its Western Desert.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

 

Great Emigration departs for Oregon

A massive wagon train, made up of 1,000 settlers and 1,000 head of cattle, sets off down the Oregon Trail from Independence, Missouri. Known as the “Great Emigration,” the expedition came two years after the first modest party of settlers ...
Read More

WALSH: The Only Thing Preventing Us From Descending Into Civil War

We’re told that “division” and “partisanship” and “bigotry” are destroying America. “Hate” is the cancer in our cultural bloodstream, they say. We must fight against hate speech and hate crimes and hate in every other form. There is so much ...
Read More

The Surprisingly Solid Mathematical Case of the Tin Foil Hat Gun Prepper Or, “Who Needs an AR-15 Anyway?”

As gun policy discussions unfold in the wake of mass shooter incidents, they routinely end in three buckets. There’s the “tyranny can never happen here” bucket, which the left has mostly abdicated in the wake of Trump winning after they ...
Read More

End of an era at the FBI

After nearly five decades as director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), J. Edgar Hoover dies, leaving the powerful government agency without the administrator who had been largely responsible for its existence and shape. Educated as a lawyer and ...
Read More

Airborne units getting new vehicle this year; legs will have to wait

The Army’s five airborne infantry brigade combat teams are slated to begin fielding 300 Ground Mobility Vehicles in use by special operations forces troops this year. The legs? They’ll get theirs next year, if the funding request is approved. Thirty ...
Read More

British Parliament adopts the Coercive Acts

Upset by the Boston Tea Party and other blatant acts of destruction of British property by American colonists, the British Parliament enacts the Coercive Acts, to the outrage of American Patriots, on this day in 1774.The Coercive Acts were a ...
Read More

Jefferson elected to the Continental Congress

Future President Thomas Jefferson is elected to the second Continental Congress on this day in 1775. Jefferson, a Virginia delegate, quickly established himself in the Continental Congress with the publication of his paper entitled A Summary View of the Rights ...
Read More

7 EMP Proof Items for Your Bugout Bag

This post was gladly contributed by Ben Ayad from Outdorrs Time. There was a time when the world thought the nuclear bomb was as bad as it could get in war. Times have changed, and we know that the one ...
Read More

Parliament passes the Boston Port Act

On this day in 1774, British Parliament passes the Boston Port Act, closing the port of Boston and demanding that the city’s residents pay for the nearly $1 million worth (in today’s money) of tea dumped into Boston Harbor during ...
Read More

 

Most Read Stories

Project Thor
Defense

Did the U.S. Just launch “Project Thor” as the secret ZUMA Payload that SpaceX just put into Orbit?

The 107-country Outer Space Treaty signed in 1967 prohibits nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons from being placed or used from Earth’s orbit. What they didn’t count on was the U.S. Air Force’s most simple weapon […]

Police State
Defense

With a Stroke of a Pen, PA Governor Wolf Limits Firearm Rights by Proclaiming State of Emergency

Today, Pennsylvania Governor Wolf issued a proclamation declaring Pennsylvania’s heroin and opioid epidemic a statewide disaster emergency, seemingly triggering the firearm prohibitions found in 18 Pa.C.S. § 6107 during declared emergencies. Specifically, Section 6107 provides: (a) General […]

Goodbye Brass
Defense

Goodbye, Brass?

by Art Merrill – Monday, February 13, 2017 Let’s skip the appetizer and get right to the meat and potatoes of a manufacturer’s claims for a new cartridge case technology to replace the 150-year reign of […]