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Militant group's warning to tourists in Egypt 'not credible': Tourism minister

Tourism ministry discredits tweet from Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis threatening future attacks on tourists in Egypt

Dalia Farouk, Ahram Online, Thursday 20 Feb 2014
Ansar Beit Al-Maqdes logo
Ansar Beit Al-Maqdes logo
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Egypt’s tourism minister Hisham Zaazou has cast doubt on a statement allegedly released by the militant group Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis in which it warned of future attacks on all tourists remaining in Egypt after 20 February.

Several news agencies on Monday reported that the group had tweeted the threat following its bombing of a tourist bus in South Sinai on Sunday that left three South Koreans and their Egyptian bus driver dead.

However, Zaazou said that the tweet from the Al-Qaeda-inspired group is not credible as Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis does not have any social media accounts or use email.

The group normally uses Youtube videos to claim responsibility for attacks.

Sunday's bombing of the tour bus, the group warned, was part of its "economic war" against Egypt's interim authorities, which it said were "traitors."

The attack on the bus, which was travelling to Israel from Saint Catherine Monastery, a popular tourist destination in South Sinai, was the first assault on tourists since the July 2013 ouster of president Mohamed Morsi sparked an Islamist insurgency.

Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis has previously claimed responsibility for several terror attacks in Egypt following Morsi's ouster, including an assassination attempt on the interior minister in September and several attacks targeting security headquarters and convoys.

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