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US places Ajnad Misr and senior Al-Qaeda official on terror list - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Egyptian security forces are seen at the site of bombing carried out by Ajnar Misr at the Helwan University, southern Cairo, Egypt, 20 November 2014.  (EPA/Eman Helal)

Egyptian security forces are seen at the site of bombing carried out by Ajnar Misr at the Helwan University, southern Cairo, Egypt, 20 November 2014. (EPA/Eman Helal)

Washington, Asharq Al-Awsat—The US State Department has listed Egyptian insurgent group Ajnad Misr and senior Al-Qaeda figure Ibrahim Al-Rubaysh as Specially Designated Global Terrorists.

In a statement issued on Thursday, the US State Department said: “Ajnad Misr is an Egyptian violent extremist group that splintered from Ansar Bayt Al-Maqdis, a designated foreign terrorist organization and Specially Designated Global entity.”

Ajnad Misr, which means the Soldiers of Egypt in Arabic, is a Sinai-based insurgent group that has claimed responsibility for several attacks on government installations and security and military forces since the ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in July, 2013.

In its most recent attack, the Islamist group targeted security forces stationed near Helwan University on November 21.

The Egyptian government has accused supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood of being behind the growing Islamist insurgency in the country.

The State Department also added Al-Rubaysh to its terror list. He is a Saudi national and a senior member of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) who had previously been held in Guantanamo Bay. “He serves as a senior advisor for AQAP operational planning and is involved in the planning of attacks,” the US State Department statement said.

“As a senior AQAP Shari’a official, Rubaysh provides the justification for attacks conducted by AQAP. In addition, he has made public statements, including one in August 2014 where he called on Muslims to wage war against the United States,” the statement added.

In October, Washington said it was offering a five million US dollar reward for anyone who can provide information leading to Rubaysh’s arrest.

Following his release from Guantanamo, Rubaysh managed to flee Saudi Arabia to join Al-Qaeda in Yemen. The Kingdom placed Rubaysh on its terror list in 2009.