At least three civilians were killed and a further seven others were wounded after a group of masked gunmen attacked the Qabir Omair village in Sheikh Zuweid (North Sinai province) on Sunday night (local time), May 17. According to reports, a group of 15 gunmen arrived from the south of the international road and attempted to kidnap two people from one of the residences. Other villagers confronted the gunmen, who then opened fire on the residents before fleeing. Reports suggest that the militants attacked the civilians after they had allegedly cooperated with the Egyptian security forces.
Further attacks by militants throughout Egypt are possible, and a heightened security presence is to be expected as a result. Military operations in North Sinai are also likely in the medium term.
Egyptian security forces have been undertaking a large-scale counterterrorism campaign in North Sinai since 2018. Egypt frequently conducts raids on suspected militant groups following terrorist attacks. The raids' targets are not typically confirmed by independent reporting and foreign tourists have previously been killed in similar operations.
Individuals in Egypt are advised to monitor the situation, refrain from traveling to North Sinai province, report suspicious behavior and objects to the authorities, remain vigilant when visiting areas vulnerable to terrorist attacks (e.g. tourist sites, churches, international and government buildings, public transportation hubs, etc.), and anticipate similar security operations over the near term. Adhere to instructions issued by local authorities and your home government.
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