Three major attacks took place Monday across Egypt, a day after clashes between
the supporters of ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi left 53 dead and 271
wounded, according to the state media.
Suspected guerrillas killed six
Egyptian soldiers on patrol near the Suez Canal city of Ismailia, according to
security officials, who said gunmen opened fire on the soldiers while they were
sitting in a car at a checkpoint near the city on the Canal, a vital global
Soon afterwards, in the southern Sinai town of Al-Tor, three
people were killed and 48 injured in a massive car bomb targeting security
The Egyptian daily Al-Masry al-Youm reported that it was a
And in southern Cairo, assailants fired rocket-propelled
grenades at a state satellite station.
After the attacks, security was
raised at the Cairo airport.
The Islamist insurgency is gathering pace
three months after an army takeover.
Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood
were killed in clashes with security forces and political opponents on Sunday,
one of the bloodiest days since the military deposed Islamist President Mohamed
Morsi in July.
The Brotherhood denies the military’s charges that it
incites violence and says it has nothing to do with militant activity, but
further confrontations may shake Egypt this week, with Morsi’s supporters
calling for further protests this week.
Eric Trager, an expert on Egypt
and a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, told The
Jerusalem Post in an interview Monday evening that, for the most part, he sees
the protests and the insurgency as two separate phenomena.
“The Muslim Brotherhood has been decapitated, so it means it is unable to change
its strategy... [and is] doing the same thing it was doing when Morsi was
removed, which is mass protests,” said Trager, adding that the protests are
“further alienating the broader Egyptian public.”
Asked if the protests
demonstrate that the Brotherhood remains organized despite the crackdown on its
leadership and members, Trager responded that the protests are more similar to
flash mobs than to coordinated marches.
“The Insurgency is a completely
separate phenomenon. There is no evidence at the moment that the Brotherhood is
behind the insurgency,” he said.
He sees the attacks as being the result
of the security breakdown in Sinai plus the flourishing of jihadis next door in
“These two events are creating a perfect storm that is taking
advantage of Islamist anger and using it as a pretext for violence,” he
Morsi’s supporters are likely to be angered by the publication of
an interview with Egypt’s army chief on Monday in which he said he told Morsi as
far back as February that he had failed as president.
Also on Monday,
Egypt’s State Commissioners Authority, which advises the government on legal
issues, recommended that the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice political party
be dissolved, according to the Egyptian website Ahram Online.
on Ikhwanweb, a Muslim Brotherhood official website, sought to rally pro-Morsi
forces, calling on all Egyptians “to rally in massive non-violent
In a sign that the Brotherhood has no wish to compromise, the
statement read: “The Revolution marches on, gathering along the way all spectra
of Egyptian people. It certainly is not, as the putschists claim, a
revolution of a single solitary faction. It is a revolution of the entire
Egyptian people, on an honorable path that shall only end with victory by the
grace of God.”
The statement went on: The “anti-coup” and “pro-democracy
national alliance” calls for a continuation of the revolution, going “from
strength to strength, fuelled by the precious blood and souls of the noble
martyrs. The Alliance salutes all those who gave their lives for the homeland,
Army chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who has
promised a political roadmap that would lead Egypt to free and fair elections,
said in the interview published on Monday that Egypt’s interests differed from
those of the Brotherhood.
“I told Morsi in February you failed and your
project is finished,” Al-Masry al-Youm quoted Sisi as saying.
clashes took place on the anniversary of the 1973 war with Israel – meant to
have been a day of national celebration. The countries signed a peace agreement
Authorities had warned that anyone protesting against the army
during the anniversary would be regarded as an agent of foreign powers, not as
an activist – a hardening of language that suggested authorities would take a
The Muslim Brotherhood accused the army of staging a coup
and working with security forces to eliminate the group through violence and
arrests, allegations the military denies.
Meanwhile, Interim President
Adly Mansour was to travel Monday to Saudi Arabia on his first official trip
abroad. The Egyptian State Information Service reported that he would hold talks
with King Abdullah and other top officials in order to expand relations in all
One of the goals was to increase Saudi investment in Egypt. Saudi
Arabia was the first country to recognize the June 30 army
Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates have pledged
to provide Egypt with $12 billion in aid after the army ousted Morsi on July 3,
and have been sending diesel, gasoline and fuel oil, according to Oil Minister
On Tuesday, Mansour is to travel to Amman for talks with
King Abdullah II to promote economic relations. The leader of Jordan already
visited Egypt in July.
In an interview with the London based Asharq
Alawsat on Saturday, Mansour said that some European countries, which “do not
understand the significance of the Egyptian revolution,” are attempting to
impose conditions on its aid.
“The Egyptian people will not accept, under
any circumstance, conditions on aid packages,” he bluntly stated pointing out
that the country recently rejected aid from Qatar.
Qatar was a strong
supporter of Morsi’s government.
Reuters contributed to this report.