CAIRO: Sinai-based militant group Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis (ABM) released an audio recording Friday warning Egyptians against joining the military and vowing to continue with attacks against Egyptian security forces “until judgment day.”
The recording, titled “A Message to the Families of the Soldiers,” was spoken by Abu Osama al-Misry, who was previously suspected by anonymous security sources cited by local newspapers to have been killed on Oct. 8 by authorities. Misry previously appeared in an August video with his face blurred presenting a sermon to a group of militants and commending the Islamic State group (IS).
“Why do we kill your conscripted sons in the Egyptian military? Here we answer your question,” Misry said in the audio. He added low-level conscripts were the “striking hand” of their leaders.
The recording, the actual date of which cannot be verified, follows the killing of over 30 soldiers in coordinated attacks in North Sinai on Oct. 24. Another Sinai jihadist group, the IS Lions in the Land of Egypt, has reportedly claimed responsibility for these militant strikes.
Military conscription in Egypt is compulsory for males between 18 and 30 for up to three years, and they may be summoned anytime for nine years after they finish their service. The military status and evaluation of Egyptian men is of vital importance when they apply for any job and when they travel abroad.
Misry went on to say that soldiers have helped besiege Gaza strip and protect Israel, and that they are in the ranks of those who do not enforce Shariah Islamic law. He added that ABM kills soldiers to “avenge the rage in the hearts of the believers.”
“Come to Sinai to watch with your own eyes what your sons have done, and hear it from the people of Sinai and not from the lying media,” Misry said. “The people of Sinai will defend their honor and money.”
The military evacuated the residents of North Sinai and bulldozed homes along the 14-kilometer Egyptian-Palestinian border in late October to build a buffer zone and clear the area of “terrorist hubs.” Some 70 smuggling tunnels were found under the demolished buildings despite the military’s destruction of dozens of tunnels in the past year.
Militants in North Sinai have killed scores of Egyptian military and police since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013. In turn, hundreds of alleged militants have been killed and arrested by the military in the peninsula.
In his concluding words on the recording, Misry advised families to “order” their sons to not join the military to protect them from being killed, and “from hellfire.”
“By God, we will not leave anyone who stands in the ranks of this apostate army. We will continue to fight them until god adjudicates between us on judgment day,” Misry said.