The Egyptian Ministry of Interior announced Monday that it has killed three terrorists involved in executing a Coptic man who helped build a church in North Sinai.
The Interior Ministry said in a statement on Monday that the National Security Agency received information about the presence of a group of terrorists involved in the killing of Nabil Habashy, 62, in North Sinai’s al-Abtal area.
The information said that these terrorists were planning further hostile attacks targeting Coptic citizens, their properties, their places of worship, and the posts of armed forces and the police.
Monitoring of the area revealed that the terrorists were on the move in a white Nissan pickup car, which they were reading to use in a hostile operation. A security campaign tightened the siege on them in that area.
As soon as they sensed their presence, the terrorists opened fire at the security forces. The resulting gunfire wiped the insurgents out and caused an explosive belt one was wearing to detonate. The forces retrieved three automatic weapons, an explosive belt, a grenade, and several automatic bullets.
Two of the slain terrorists were also identifed – their leader was wanted terrorist Mohamed Ziada Salem Ziada, whose nom de guerre is Ammar. He took over the preparation, planning and implementation of many terrorist attacks in North Sinai, and was also responsible for providing logistical support to terrorist elements.
The second is the terrorist Youssef Ibrahim Salim, nom de guerre Abu Mohamed, who was involved in carrying out many terrorist operations and who assisted Ziada in providing logistical support.
Remaining members of the terrorist cell involved in the killing of Habashy are being pursued. They were identified as Jihad Atallah Salama Odeh, Ahmed Kamal Mohamed Shehata, and Khaled Mohamed Salim Hussein.
The Islamic State had uploaded a video online on Sunday of Habashy being executed.
The victim was shot to death six months after being abducted in the city of Bir al-Abed in North Sinai.
ISIS members kidnapped Habashy in November while he was walking on a street in the city, using a stolen car to drive him away.
Habashy’s condition remained unknown until the video of his execution was posted.