A member of a Sinai based jihadist movement who led a deadly attack in Israel in 2011 died last week when a car accident he was involved in exploded a bomb that he was carrying.
Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis (Partisans of Jerusalem) announced on Friday that Tawfiq Mohamed Fareej, one of its founders died in the car accident, AFP reported.
Fareej led the August 2011 crossborder attack in Israel that killed eight people and he was also involved in a failed assassination attempt on the Egyptian interior minister, Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis said in a statement, according to the report.
State-run news website Al-Ahram also reported that Fareej had died, but said he was killed by an army raid in the Sinai peninsula. The army was not immediately available to comment on this.
The 2011 attack was a three-stage terrorist attack along Israel’s border with Egypt which began when terrorists opened fire at an Egged bus traveling on Road 12 near Eilat.
Several minutes later, a number of bombs went off next to an IDF patrol traveling along the border with Egypt. There were also reports of mortar fire from Egypt into Israel. The terrorists apparently then moved on to another spot and fired an anti-tank missile at another vehicle.
Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis claimed responsibility for the suicide attack last month on a tourist bus in Sinai that killed three South Koreans and their Egyptian driver.
The February attack on the bus, which was traveling to Israel from St. Catherine’s Monastery, a popular tourist destination in south Sinai, was the first assault on tourists since president Mohamed Morsi’s ouster last July spurred an Islamist insurgency.
Reuters and Ariel Ben Solomon contributed to this report.
On Saturday, gunmen shot dead six army officers near Cairo, the second attack on Egyptian security forces in three days that the military has blamed on the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood
The Brotherhood, which says it is committed to peaceful activism, condemned that attack and accused the government of trying to implicate it for political reasons.
No other group, including Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, has claimed responsibility for the Saturday attack.