At least 100 civilians – possibly hundreds – killed in attack at Egypt mosque

At least 100 civilians – possibly hundreds – killed in attack at Egypt mosque
Egyptians walk past bodies following a gun and bombing attack on Friday at the al-Rawda mosque, west of the North Sinai capital of El-Arish. (Image source: Getty Images)

Bloodied bodies lined the Sufi mosque in Egypt where suspected Islamist militants bombed and opened fire on worshipers Friday, leaving at least 100 dead and more than 120 injured.

There are conflicting reports on the number of dead. Some news agencies are reporting numbers over 200. Egyptian state media is currently reporting at least 235 dead.

The attack on the al-Rawdah mosque in the town of Bir al-Abdin is the deadliest attack on civilians and first on a mosque since Egypt’s military overthrew Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in July 2013, according to Reuters.

Bir al-Abdin lies about 25 miles west of the North Sinai provincial capital of el-Arish, an area that has battled intensified Islamic State insurgency over the last four years.

Men in off-road vehicles opened fire on worshipers during prayers, Fox News reported. A Ministry of Health spokesman said the terrorists set off a bomb during the attack.

The attackers shot at people fleeing the mosque and even fired at the ambulances transporting victims to hospitals.

“ISIS militants were blocking escape routes from the area by blowing up cars and leaving the burning wrecks in the street,” security officials told local media.

Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi declared a three-day mourning period for the attack, according to Egypt news agency MENA.

No group immediately claimed credit for the attack.

In October, militants attacked police in the Western Desert, killing 16 officers. Security officials also said dozens more, including high-ranking counterterrorism officers, died in an attack in the capital city of Cairo, the Associated Press reported.

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