Tuesday, 10 September 2013

In Egypt, bombing signals emergence of competent new militant group

An Islamist militant group based in the Sinai Peninsula, Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, claimed responsibility in an online statement for the September 5 assassination attempt targeting Egyptian Interior Minister Mohammed Ibrahim, AFP reported...The group apologised for not killing Ibrahim and vowed another attack targeting him and army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi...The minister was not near his home at the time, three security sources said...The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood in an official statement condemned the attempt on Egyptian Interior Minister Mohammed Ibrahim's life...The Brotherhood emphasized it was engaged in a peaceful struggle and called the incident a criminal act...The attack targeted the motorcade of Mr Ibrahim shortly after he left his home, but was not large enough to penetrate the vehicle...Early reports explain the device was attached to a standing motorcycle on the street, instead of being thrown, and contained perhaps several kilograms of high explosives...Mr Ibrahim is a very hard target with a dedicated security detail and by almost successfully killing him the attack suggests the Islamist group is highly experienced in good surveillance tradecraft, at least enough to find the correct attack site...Creating a viable explosive device is not easy and the group will learn from their mistakes for the vowed follow-on attacks...If police forces cannot catch the group soon, then Egyptian security service will need to prepare for more attacks on their officials.

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