ISIS has claimed responsibility for an attack with improvised explosive devices (IEDs) on a patrol of the Egyptian Armed Forces (EAF) in the Sinai Peninsula.
According to the terrorist group’s official news agency, Amaq, the patrol was targeted with two IEDs while it was passing near the al-Hussienat school to the west of Rafah city, which is located in the northeastern part of Sinai. The agency said that five service members of the EAF, including an officer, and pro-government tribal fighters were killed in the attack.
These claims were confirmed by Egyptian news sources, who identified the slain officer as Colonel Osama Abdel Halim. He was reportedly the commander of the EAF’s 188th Infantry Battalion.
ISIS’s remaining cells in Sinai stepped up their attacks on the EAF and tribal forces in the last few weeks, especially near Rafah
On May 7, eleven Egyptian service members were killed as a result of an attack by ISIS on one of the Suze Canal’s water pumping stations in western Sinai. On May 11, the military acknowledged that five service members were killed and two others were wounded while repelling an attack by the terrorist group near Rafah. Later on June 10 and 11, two Egyptian service members and three pro-government tribal fighters had been killed in clashes with ISIS terrorists in the outskirts of Rafah.
In response to ISIS’s recent attacks, the EAF and tribal forces deployed additional reinforcements around Rafah. Despite this, the city’s outskirts are yet to be secured. The city is slowly turning into the focal point of ISIS insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula.
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