Cairo- ISIS’ Egyptian branch, Sinai Province, said Tuesday that it was behind two terrorist attacks in the Sinai Peninsula, claiming its members killed 25 policemen despite confirmations by the Egyptian authorities that only eight people died in the assault.
ISIS’ claim of responsibility for the separate attacks on police checkpoints near the city of Al-Arish came hours after Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi said the country faces a tough struggle ahead in combatting terrorism and that the “price will be very heavy.”
He said around 25,000 Egyptian troops are operating in Sinai, which has seen more than a decade of militant violence.
ISIS’ Amaq news agency said on Tuesday that 25 Egyptian policemen were killed in a “surprise attack launched by ISIS fighters on a checkpoint west of Arish city in North Sinai.”
Meanwhile, the U.N. Security Council denounced the terrorist attack.
In a press statement, the 15-member body “condemned in the strongest terms the heinous and cowardly terrorist attack,” and “reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security.”
The Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice and urged all states to cooperate actively with the government of Egypt and all other relevant authorities in this regard.
“Any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed,” the Council reiterated, reaffirming the need for all states to combat by all means threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts.