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April 10, 2014 5:08 pm

State Dept. Designates Sinai Group as Terror Org. for Attacks on Israel, Others

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Bedouins in the Sinai desert. Photo: Wiki Commons. The U.S. State Department on Wednesday designated Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis (ABM), a group operating in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization.

According to the State Department, ABM—which shares an ideology with al-Qaeda but isn’t a formal affiliate—is responsible for attacks on Israel, Egyptian security services, and tourists in the Sinai Peninsula. The terror group formed in the wake of the 2011 Egyptian revolution.

The attacks on Israel have included a July 2012 bombing of a Sinai natural gas pipeline to Israel, an August 2012 rocket attack on the southern Israeli city Eilat, and a September 2012 attack on an Israeli border patrol that killed one soldier and injured another. ABM has also been involved in numerous attacks on Egyptian military and government officials.

Furthermore, ABM was responsible for the February 2014 bombing of a tour bus that killed three South Korean Christian tourists and their Egyptian driver as they prepared to cross the border into Israel.

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