New militant group claims responsibility for massive Oct 24 Sinai attack
Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis members - YOUM7 (Archive)

CAIRO:  A militant group affiliated with the Islamic State group (IS) has reportedly claimed responsibility for the infamous Oct. 24 attack on military and security forces at the Karam Qowadis checkpoint in North Sinai, which as part of a series of coordinated attacks near Arish and Sheikh Zuwayed, killed over 30 soldiers and sent the nation into a state of panic.

A tweet published by several news outlets was attributed to the group apparently going by the name of “IS Lions in the Land of Egypt.” The group said the “war against the State hasn’t even started and we won’t stop until we reach Jerusalem,” Youm7 reported Friday, adding a copy of the alleged tweet, which featured the IS logo.

No Twitter account called “IS Lions in the Land of Egypt” was found by The Cairo Post Friday, but a hashtag with a similar name called “lions of IS” contains photos, videos and press statements related to IS operations.

A state of emergency and curfew has been in place since the Oct. 24 attack and is supposed to be maintained for three months in parts of North Sinai. The explosions that targeted the military installation in Sheikh Zuwayed city killed over 27 soldiers and injured 31.

Some speculated that those who masterminded the terrorist operation were foreigners who had linked up with local members of the Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis (ABM) organization, Al-Ahram reported on Nov. 2.

ABM is a Sinai-based militant group conducting operations against the military and police, and according to Reuters and Aswat Masriya news reports this week, it may have sworn allegiance to IS.

Additional reporting by Islam Gamal, Mohamed Fahim Abdel Ghaffar and Jacqueline Mounir.

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