Egypt busts cell recruiting Syria militants
Egyptian security forces have arrested four suspected members of a militant cell recruiting fighters for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group in Syria.
A police official told Egypt’s state news agency MENA that members of the cell have confessed, and that the cell is comprised of eight people, four of whom are currently in Syria.
ISIS has attracted a following from Egyptian Islamists on social media sites, according to Reuters news agency. Egyptian security sources estimate that up to 8,000 Egyptians are fighting abroad with militant groups such as ISIS and al-Qaeda.
MENA news agency did not reveal the names of the suspects in the cell, but added that they were jailed pending investigation.
Egypt recently joined a U.S.-led coalition formed to combat ISIS’ growing threat in Syria and Iraq.
Egypt is also battling its own militant insurgency, mostly in Sinai. In a video posted on YouTube on Sunday, the Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis accused the Egyptian government of collaborating with the Israelis to attack their fighters in Sinai and vowed to hunt down the local informants they rely on.
“These are your sons, continuing to harvest the spies of the Jews,” a spokesman for the group says in the video.
The gruesome footage shows the three men confessing before being decapitated by masked men. Their detached heads are then placed on their backs.
A fourth man, shown confessing to being an informant for the Egyptian military, is then shot down by bullets.