The armed forces arrested 11 suspects early Tuesday morning for the killing of 25 central security conscripts Monday following a military campaign to “capture the perpetrators.”
The killings came after 27 soldiers were ambushed during their commute to base in the Abu-Taweela region in Sinai. The conscripts’ microbuses were obstructed on the Arish-Rafah road by several trucks, after which they were taken out, tied and executed.
Only two soldiers survived the attack, and remain in critical condition.
The military media office confirmed the capture of individuals belonging to takfiri groups. A statement released by the military explained that among the 11 there were 9 Egyptians and two Palestinians.
The names and pictures of the victims were published on the ministry’s official Facebook page and a funeral was held for the killed conscripts upon the arrival of their bodies at Almaza airport.
Several statements were released domestically and internationally condemning the bloodshed.
The Arab League condemned the attacks on the Egyptian soldiers, “expressing support for the Egyptian military” while an EU spokesman condemned the recent attack by “extremists” before calling for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
Domestically, the 6th of April movement held the Minister of Interior Mohamed Ibrahim responsible for recent violence. Within their statement, they pressed the minister on whether a proper plan was in place to protect the lives of security forces. The statement went on to accuse the minister of lying regarding the death of 36 Muslim Brotherhood detainees on Sunday.
Spokesman for the Egyptian cabinet Mostafa Hegazy meanwhile condemned the attacks via twitter, saying, “this is not the first time our soldiers were killed by treachery…this vile and brutal attack occurred by a group that we trusted, we all know we are the committers of the violence.”
Sinai has been on high alert since fresh attacks were launched Monday night in Al-Arish, with perpetrators employing light and midsized weapons. No casualties were reported.
Security forces in North Sinai arrested three other armed assailants in possession of an automatic rifle equipped with a sniper scope along with a large array of ammunition. Those arrested have been accused of firing on security forces.
Other facilities were attacked, including the North Sinai Security Directorate and Governor’s building, the military hospital, the Armed Forces Officers Club and Hotel, court buildings, traffic administration, and the first Al-Arish police station.