Egypt fighting ‘existential war': Sisi
President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi addresses the nation in the presence of Defense Minister Sedky Sobhy - YOUM7

CAIRO: The latest attacks against Egypt are meant to break the people’s will, said President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, in televised remarks Saturday the day after a terrorist attack killed at least 30 soldiers in the Sinai.

He blamed the attack on “external forces,” and called for the nation’s support against “what is plotted against them.”

Following the attack a three-month state of emergency was declared in parts of the Sinai, with a curfew from 5 p.m. until 7 a.m.

The attack included a number of explosions on a military installation in North Sinai’s Sheikh Zuwayed, which has seen a number of attacks against police and military outposts since the July 2013 ouster of Mohamed Morsi, and has also been the target for security crackdowns.

Sisi said the military campaigns in the region were a strategy to combat a “den of terrorism,” adding “this is a road we decided to hit since the beginning.”

“Every day dozens of terrorists are killed, we have been fighting for months.Our battle in Sinai won’t end any time soon,” the president added.

Sisi met with key defense officials Saturday morning to discuss the state response to the attacks, the presidential spokesperson announced on the official Facebook page.

Friday’s attack has the highest death toll in more than a year; in August 2013, following the dispersal of pro-Muslim Brotherhood sit-ins at Rabaa al-Adaweya mosque, 25 soldiers were killed when militants targeted them with RPG missiles near Rafah, in North Sinai.

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