Al-Rawdah mosque in North Sinai – Press Photo
CAIRO – 30 November 2017: Abu Hajar al-Hashemi, who is presented as ISIS' leader in Sinai, is the main perpetrator of the attack on Al-Rawdah mosque, West of Al-Arish City, revealed security forces to Emirates 24 News Website.
The attack on Al-Rawda mosque was an attempt to pave the way for ISIS to establish a Caliphate's Army (Jund al-Khalafah) led by Amr Saad Abbas in Cairo, Egypt. Emirates 24 News Website added that the “takfiri terrorist cell” in Ismailia, arrested on Tuesday, revealed the organization’s plans in the coming period.
Hashemi is a former Iraqi army officer who joined ISIS when he became affiliated to Tawheed and Jihad group, founded by the Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. He then became ISIS Sinai governor after the Armed Forces killed Abu Duaa al-Ansari, the former leader of the ISIS branch in Sinai, in August 2016.
During an interview with the ISIS News Website Al-Nabaa, Hashemi said that the military campaign carried out against terror groups in Sinai, in cooperation with police, is precise. He added that Sinai is besieged by the army.
The bloody terrorist attack that hit the main mosque in North Sinai’s Al-Rawdah Village on Friday took the lives of roughly 22 percent of its male residents. The village’s population is just under 2,111 people, according to the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics’ (CAPMAS) 2016 report.
At least 311 people were killed and 121 injured when unidentified militants attacked a crowded mosque during Friday prayers in the Sinai Peninsula, setting off explosives and spraying worshippers with gunfire.
According to eyewitnesses, the militants stormed the Al-Rawdah Mosque, West of Al-Arish City, detonated an explosive device around the mosque, set fire to cars of the villagers, and then cut off the main road leading to the village.
Al-Rawdah Village is near Bi’r Al-Abd city in North Sinai, and is considered one of the strongholds of the Sufi Ahmadiyya Al-Jerrahi Muslim Community. They have a Zawya (small mosque) beside the attacked Al-Rawdah Mosque; the village has no shrines.
Rawda village is located on the international road linking Al-Arish with Bi’r Al-Abd. The majority of its population works in producing salt and agriculture. The village harbored a large number of families who fled from Sheikh Zuweid city following several terrorist attacks that hit the area.
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