Is­lamic State claims at­tack near Chris­tian land­mark

The Washington Times Daily - - WORLD -

CAIRO | The Is­lamic State ex­trem­ist group has claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for an at­tack on an Egyp­tian po­lice check­point near the famed Saint Cather­ine’s Monastery in Si­nai late Tues­day, which au­thor­i­ties said killed one po­lice­man and wounded four.

The mil­i­tants opened fire from an el­e­vated hill­top over­look­ing the po­lice check­point just out­side the monastery, which is lo­cated in a re­mote desert and moun­tain­ous area in the south­ern part of the Si­nai Penin­sula.

This is the first time the Is­lamic State has at­tacked a monastery, and comes ahead of a planned visit by Pope Fran­cis to Egypt next week.

The at­tack on the monastery, built in the 6th cen­tury and a pop­u­lar site for tourists vis­it­ing the Red Sea re­sorts along Si­nai’s south­ern coast, comes just over a week af­ter sui­cide bombers at­tacked two Chris­tian churches in the Nile Delta city of Tanta and the coastal city of Alexan­dria, killing 45 peo­ple on Palm Sun­day. Is­lamic State has vowed more at­tacks against Chris­tians in Egypt, who make up 10 per­cent of the coun­try’s pop­u­la­tion of over 90 mil­lion peo­ple.

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