The Interior Ministry two days ago imposed a night curfew on two strips along north and middle Sinai following the terrorist shooting that took place Tuesday 18 April. The shooting was conducted against a security checkpoint some 800 metres away from St Catherine’s Monastery; a police officer lost his life and four policemen were injured. The police shot back at the gunmen who fled; one of them left his automatic weapons behind because he had to help his wounded friends flee. Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack.
Wednesday 19 April, Interior Ministry sources said that one of the terrorists who shot at the security checkpoint was shot dead during a clash with the police and military. The terrorist went under the name of Abu-Faris al-Maghrabi and had been wearing a suicide belt that did not detonate. The police chased the terrorists with the help of the military and the Sinai Bedouin, the source said, and found their hideout.
Watani contacted St Catherine’s Monastery in Sinai, which is affiliated to the Greek Orthodox Church. Father Gregorios said that the monks and monastery were all safe and sound; they had heard the gunshots but were not aware where they came from or what they indicated.
Even though the St Catherine’s was not touched, the proximity of the attack to the monastery was taken by many to mean it was the most recent in a string of attacks against Christians in Egypt. Sunday 9 April, which coincided with Palm Sunday, witnessed two suicide attacks against churches in Egypt; 46 lost their lives and scores were injured. A previous suicide bombing had taken place on 11 December 2016 at al-Boutrossiya church in Cairo, claiming 29 lives.
22 April 2017