Egypt refers 10 members of ISIS-affiliated cell to court

Monday 26-12-2016 04:43 PM

Armoured vehicles heading to the town of Sheikh Zuweid in North Sinai. REUTERS

CAIRO, Dec 26 (Aswat Masriya) – An Egyptian prosecutor has referred on Monday 10 men to criminal court on charges of forming an ISIS-affiliated terrorist cell in Suez governorate.

The defendants are accused of “disturbing public peace, inciting violence, terrorising innocents, plotting terror attacks and possessing firearms.”

According to investigations, one of the defendants received training from Sinai-based militant group known as Sinai Province. He arrived in Suez governorate to recruit terrorist elements, who then formed a cell that was planning to target officers and commit acts of violence in the city.

Another defendant was a teacher, who was responsible for recruiting new members.

The defendants, who were arrested on Oct.10, possessed firearms, maps, leaflets and a laptop that has photos of police and military facilities that they were planning to target.  

Last month, Egypt’s Prosecutor General Nabil Sadek referred 292 members of Sinai Province group to a military court over forming 22 terrorist cells. The defendants were accused of “carrying out several terrorist attacks mostly in North Sinai, and planning to assassinate President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.”

Egypt is battling an insurgency in North Sinai that peaked following the military ouster of former President Mohamed Mursi in July 2013, after protests against his rule. 

In November 2014, Sinai Province pledged allegiance to Islamic State fighters in Iraq and Syria, making Sinai one of the many territories in the region where the militant group has a foothold. 

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