A colonel in the Egyptian military was killed and three recruits injured on Sunday when their armored vehicle was hit by an explosion in the Sinai peninsula, according to security sources.
The Sinai-based IS affiliate, known as Sinai Province, has mainly attacked police and military soldiers, but has also claimed bombings that killed civilians, including the downing of a Russian passenger plane over the Sinai in 2015, which killed all 224 people on board and destructed Egypt’s tourism industry.
Moreover, the militants have also extended their campaign to other parts of Egypt, most recently attacking churches in Cairo and other cities with the loss of dozens of lives.
In a further escalation of the conflict in Sinai, militants last week opened fire on members of a Sinai tribe, the Tarabeen, which has been armed by the army, and killed 12 of them, according to security and tribal sources, as reported by Reuters.
On Sunday, the Islamic State said that a member of the group drove a motorcycle packed with explosives into a gathering of the tribesmen and detonated it, killing 15 and damaging military equipment.
“No immediate comment was available from the army”, said Reuters.
The Independent, British newspaper, has previously reported that al-Sisi is employing local militia to offer assistance to the Egyptian security forces in their war against ISIS, which shows how desperate al-Sisi’s war against ISIS has become.
The Independent said, “It is a sign of just how desperate the military situation has become in the battle with ISIS that the Egyptian Army, whose former field marshal and commander, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi , is now the president, should be resorting to such measures.”
This, in fact, is one of the most alerting factors in Egypt’s war against terrorism as the Egyptian army is following the same contaminated path as many of its neighbors by using a killer-militia in its war against Isis in Sinai, especially that counter-insurgency wars always breed corruption and counter-murder.
The Independent also said that,”The problem is that Egypt’s out-of-control war against ISIS– and ISIS’s new killer cells west of the canal – may soon make such institutions powerless. And when army militias are now at work to execute the state’s supposed enemies… Well, just think Iraq.”