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At least 300 were killed in an attack on a mosque in Egypt


Egypt's top prosecutor said on Saturday that over 300 people were killed during Friday's massacre at a mosque in northern Sinai.

A statement by the country’s chief prosecutor, Nabil Sadeq, said at least 127 other people were wounded in the incident.

Friday’s attack included both a bombing and a shooting at the al-Rawdah mosque in the Egyptian town of Bir al-Abd.

Al-Rawdah is largely attended by Sufi Muslims, and Bir al-Abd is 25 miles from El-Arish, which is the North Sinai’s provincial capital city.

Egyptian officials earlier Friday told MENA that four off-road vehicles bombed the mosque during the sermon segment of the day’s prayers before opening fire upon worshippers there.

MENA additionally reported that the bloodshed appears to be the latest attack by the area’s local Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) affiliate.

Victims have since been transported to local hospitals, according to Egyptian officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief reporters.

Egyptian health ministry spokesman Khalid Mujahid on Friday told the Masriya television station that the incident is a “terrorist attack.”

Masriya TV reported that Egyptian President Abdel Fatah el-Sisi is meeting with a security committee to discuss the implications of the massacre.

El-Sisi also declared three days of national mourning in Egypt, whose security forces have been battling militants in northern Sinai for several years.

ISIS militants have repeatedly claimed responsibility in the past for attacks that have impacted the region.

The BBC on Friday reported that the attack on al-Rawdah is the deadliest assault of its kind in Egypt.

One report the BBC cited said that the target at the mosque appeared to be supporters of the security forces who were praying there.

Bir al-Abd locals were also quoted as saying that practitioners of Sufism, or Islamic mysticism, regularly gathered at the mosque.

Jihadist groups like ISIS view Sufis as heretics, which may explain Friday’s attack marking the latest escalation of violence in Egypt.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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