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Egypt Attacks: What’s Being Done To Counter Extremism?

Terrorism continues to take its toll, as militants launched a bomb on a mosque in Egypt’s North Sinai province, and also launching gun attacks on those worshipers who tried to flee.State media says 235 people have been killed.

It is the deadliest attack of its kind since an Islamist insurgency in the peninsula was stepped up in 2013. President el-Sisi has vowed to use “brute force” in response to these deadly attacks. No group has yet claimed the attack, but militants affiliated with so-called Islamic State (IS) have been responsible for scores of deadly attacks in the province. They usually target security forces and Christian churches, and the bloody attack on a mosque associated with Sufi Muslims has shocked Egypt.

Locals are claiming that the attack was targeted on followers of Sufism, a mystical branch of Sunni Islam. Sufis are widely accepted across the Muslim world, but jihadist groups view them as heretics, including the IS. The head of IS’s religious police in Sinai said last December that Sufis who did not “repent” would be killed, after the group beheaded two elderly men reported to be Sufi clerics.

Such unnecessary loss of lives is apparently linked to extremist views. It is only because of such extremist beliefs that these militants are prepared, and are willing to sacrifice such a high amount of lives. To them, it is the right thing to do. They are of unwavering faith when it comes to such and nothing will sway them. The question is, what is being done to counter these extremist views? Where are the greatly learned and revered Islamist scholars? What are the Arab governments doing to counter these?

Militant Islamists have been waging an insurgency on the Sinai peninsula in recent years, stepping up attacks after Egypt’s military overthrew Islamist President Mohammed Morsi after mass anti-government protests in July 2013.

t has been operating mainly in North Sinai, which has been under a state of emergency since October 2014, when 33 security personnel were killed in an attack claimed by the group.

Sinai Province is thought to want to take control of the Sinai Peninsula in order to turn it into an Islamist province run by IS.


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