Egypt – At least ten Egyptian soldiers including a colonel were killed in a suicide bomb attack on an army checkpoint in northern Sinai, security sources said on the 7 Jul 17. Another 40 fighters were killed in a subsequent gun battle with soldiers at the checkpoint, an army spokesperson said on the 7 Jul 17. The attack started when a suicide car bomber rammed his vehicle into the checkpoint at a military compound in the southern Rafah village of el-Barth, followed by heavy gunfire from dozens of masked fighters on foot, officials said. The dead included a high ranking Special Forces officer, Colonel Ahmed el-Mansi, and at least 20 others were wounded in the attack. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. Speaking from Bologna, Spain, Timothy Kaldas, a non-resident fellow at the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy, said there was a high likelihood that the attack would be claimed by Wilayat Sinai, a group affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant group. The group frequently targets military and police personnel, he said, adding that Friday's attack was "unfortunately a very predictable type of attack and something we've seen regularly". Over the past months, ISIL has focused its attacks on Egypt's Christian minority and carried out at least four deadly attacks that killed dozens, prompting army chief-turned-President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi to declare a state of emergency in the country. The Sinai branch of ISIL appears to be the most resilient outside Syria and Iraq, where the so-called caliphate is witnessing its demise. The group's offshoot in Libya has been uprooted in months-long battles in the central city of Sirte while its branch in Yemen has failed to seize territories or compete with its al-Qaeda rivals.
Egypt – Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Christians have been told by church leaders to cancel all events and activities outside churches in July because of a security threat, church and security sources said on the 13 Jul 17. The warning followed an attack in May 17 by ISIS on Copts travelling to a monastery in central Egypt that killed 29 people. A month earlier, 44 people were killed in bomb attacks at a cathedral and another church on Palm Sunday. Sources said the warning was given to individual church leaders by a representative of the Coptic Orthodox Pope. Copts on trips or youth camps had been told to cut short their activities and return home early. The Egyptian Catholic church said it got the same instructions. The church “complied with the interior minister’s decision to cancel church trips and camps until further notice,” Father Rafik Greish, a spokesman for the Coptic Catholic Church said. A Coptic Church official said that his church received “oral instructions this week, nothing written, to prevent panic,” he said. The source said the church was provided with more security forces to secure the gates of the church during the week.
Egypt – Gunmen ambushed an Egyptian security checkpoint on the 14 Jul 17 killing five policemen in an area just south of the capital, the state-run MENA news agency said. The attack in al-Badrasheen area of Giza province, 30 km (20 miles) south of Cairo, killed two officers and three conscripts, the agency said citing a security source. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but Egyptian security forces have been battling the local affiliate of ISIS in the northern Sinai area and attacks have extended to other parts of Egypt.
Egypt/Lone Wolf Attack – Two German tourists have been killed and four other foreigners were wounded when an assailant stabbed them at an Egyptian Red Sea beach resort, officials said. Germany's foreign ministry confirmed on the 15 Jul 17 that the two women killed in the attack in Hurghada were German nationals. Egypt's interior ministry said the assailant was arrested immediately on the 14 Jul 17 and that a motive was still under investigation. The attacker had swum from a nearby public beach to access the holiday resort, the ministry said. A security official said the attacker, a man in his 20s who was dressed in a black T-shirt and blue jeans, wielded a knife and intentionally sought to attack foreigners. He shouted in Arabic during the attack: "Stay away, I don't want Egyptians." He stabbed the tourists in the face, neck and feet. According to a news agency, the attack happened at Sunny Days El Palacio hotel. All of the victims were reported to be women. An Armenian foreign ministry spokesman said two Armenian women had been wounded in the attack, and the Czech foreign ministry tweeted that one of its nationals had been lightly injured. Hurghada is one of Egypt's most popular beach resorts, especially with Ukrainians and European tourists. A similar attack took place in Hurghada in Jan 16 when two attackers armed with a gun, a knife and a suicide belt landed on the beach of a hotel, wounding two foreign tourists, according to security sources. Also on the 14 Jan 17, unknown assailants shot dead five policemen south of Cairo, in the latest of a series of attacks targeting the country's security forces.
Kenya/al-Shabaab – Suspected al-Shabaab fighter’s beheaded nine men in an overnight assault on a village in the Kenyan coastal district of Lamu, police said, days after the armed group killed three police officers in an attack on a nearby village. A witness confirmed the death toll to Reuters news agency. "They raided Jima and Pandanguo villages and killed nine men. They were slaughtered like chickens, using knives," said the witness. Kenya's Interior Ministry announced late on the 8 Jul 17 that curfew was imposed in three districts following the attack. It said in a tweet that the 12-hour curfew, from 1830 hrs local (1530 hrs GMT), affects parts of Lamu, Garissa and Tana River and is to be in place for the next three months. In a televised address on the morning of the 8 Jul 17 following the death in hospital of Kenya's Interior Minister Joseph Nkaissery, President Uhuru Kenyatta spoke of "an unfortunate incident this morning, which we are assessing". Appointing Education Minister Fred Matiangi as acting security minister, Kenyatta promised there would be "no vacuum in securing our country". President Uhuru Kenyatta sought to reassure Kenyans when mentioning the latest killings in a speech earlier in the day.
Libya – A rocket hit a beach in Tripoli killing five people, including at least one child, and wounding 25 others, the Libyan health ministry said. The blast on the 4 Jul 17 hit the beach in front of Mitiga airport in the east of the Libyan capital, the ministry statement said. An interior ministry source said there were clashes on the 4 Jul 17 inside the airport perimeter between security forces and an "outlawed" group. The airport was badly damaged during fighting between rival militias in mid-2014. The source however could not say whether the attack on the civilians was intentional.