A blatant ISIS attack on a police checkpoint guarding Saint Catherine’s Monastery in Sinai left one officer dead and four others injured. The shots, fired from a nearby hilltop, are said to mark the militant’s first attack on a monastery. The attack comes just a week before Pope Francis is scheduled to visit the persecuted minority, which raises questions about his safety in this endeavor.
4/19/2017 Egypt (FOX) – The Islamic State (ISIS) extremist group has claimed responsibility for an attack on an Egyptian police checkpoint near the famed Saint Catherine’s Monastery in Sinai late Tuesday which authorities said killed one policeman and wounded four.
The militants opened fire from an elevated hilltop overlooking the police checkpoint just outside the monastery, which is located in a remote desert and mountainous area in the southern part of the Sinai Peninsula, according to a statement by the Interior Ministry.
After an exchange of gunfire, the attackers fled the scene, the ministry said, adding that some of the gunmen were wounded in the shootout.
No further details were immediately available.
According to SITE Intelligence Group, which tracks online activity of militants, the ISIS-affiliated Amaq news agency announced that the group’s militants carried out the attack near Saint Catherine. This is the first time the ISIS has attacked a monastery.