Independent armed group announces fight against Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis in Sinai
Sinai militants - YOUM7

CAIRO: A group calling itself the “Sons of Sinai” released a video Nov. 2 in which they vowed to avenge the “victims of terrorism,” and fight the Sinai-based militant group Ansar Bayt Al-Maqdis, which has claimed responsibility for a number of deadly attacks on police and military forces in the past year.

The group said they formed the movement because they believe they “must stand still in the face of terrorism,” following an attack on the military in Sinai Oct. 24 that left 31 soldiers dead.

A group of nine men stood in front of the camera in a desert-like place, dressed in army fatigues, with their faces masked by scarves. All were carrying different weapons.

“We are the sons of Sinai. Today we cry for Sinai,” said one of the men standing in the middle, reading from a pamphlet in what seemed to be a ‘mission statement.’

The Egyptian army will not allow separate armed groups to fight against militants in North Sinai, according to a military source who spoke to Al-Dostour Wednesday.

Maj. Mahmoud Zaher said the members of the group should be arrested as “there can be no good coming out of this,” in a phone interview with Sada el-Balad.

Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis has claimed responsibility for a number of terrorist attacks, but has not yet made a statement about the Oct. 24 attack.

Following the attack, the army had declared a state of emergency in North Sinai cities such as Rafah, Sheikh Zuwayed and Arish, and is currently evacuating the residential areas near the border to build a buffer zone along the 14-kilometer border.

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