ISIS claims attack killing 23 Egyptian troops, cuts communications lines

The Islamic State claimed Friday’s suicide car bomb-cum-gunfire attack on an Egyptian checkpoint in northern Sinai on the Gazan border, which left 23 Egyptian troops dead, including Special Forces officer, Col. Ahmed el-Mansi, and 33 injured. Egyptian warplanes and helicopters in subsequent hot pursuit of the terrorists killed at least 40 of them. DEBKAfile: This was the broadest and most audacious jihadi assault ever on an Egyptian army Sinai position. It was also meticulously planned. By detonating two car bombs, the attackers cut off Egyptian military communications lines in northern Sinai. An Egyptian officer gave up attempts to reach headquarters in El Arish for reinforcements and a plea for artillery fire to blast the assailants, and resorted to WhatsApp on his cell phone. His message: “These are the last moments of my life.”

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