Cairo court rules Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis terrorist organization
Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis members - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO: Cairo Court for Urgent Matters designated the Sinai-based militant group Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis as a terrorist organization on Monday, obliging the Cabinet and the interim President Adly Mansour to uphold the decision, according to Youm7.

On March 16, lawyer Ahmed Ibrahim filed a lawsuit against interim president Adly Mansour, Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab and Minister of Interior Mohamed Ibrahim demanding that they declare Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis a terrorist organization.

Ibrahim’s lawsuit is based on Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis claiming responsibility for numerous high-profile attacks that targeted security forces and military institutions since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi.

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Badr Abdel Atty welcomed the court’s decision.

“The Egyptian government will provide Europe and the United States with all the necessary documents proving the link between Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis and the Muslim Brotherhood,” Abdel Atty told The Cairo Post, urging the west to officially declare the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization.

On April 2, the British parliament approved a government motion to add Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, Al Murabitun and Ansar al-Sharia to the list of the international terrorist organizations.

On April 9, the Department of State announced in a statement the designation of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO).

“Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis is primarily a local group that is not formally linked to Al-Qaeda, but shares some of its ideology,” said the statement.

Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis was founded in 2011, and claimed responsibility for a number of attacks, including the assassination of head of the Minister of Interior’s technical office General Mohamed al-Saied on Jan. 28, and the attempted assassination of Minister of Interior Mohamed Ibrahim last September.

It also claimed responsibility for an attack that rocked South Sinai’s security department in early October, the bombing of a tourist bus in Taba on Feb. 17, along with the bombing that targeted the Cairo Security Directorate, and the multiple bombings of the gas pipeline in North Sinai between Egypt, Jordan and Israel.

The group claimed responsibility for these attacks through online statements and videos circulated on several social media websites.

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