ISIS Claims Responsibility for Bus Attack on Christians That Killed 29 in

ISIS Claims Responsibility for Bus Attack on Christians That Killed 29 in
ISIS Claims Responsibility for Bus Attack on Christians That Killed 29 in Egypt

A still taken from 's state-run Nile TV channel on May 26, 2017 shows the remains of a bus that was attacked while carrying Egyptian Christians in Minya province, some 260 kms south of the capital Cairo, killing dozens people according to state media and the health ministry. Nile News/AFP/Getty Images

7:51 AM ET

(CAIRO) — The death toll in the attack by gunmen on a bus transporting Christians to a monastery south of Cairo rose to 29, Egyptian authorities said Saturday.

The Egyptian Cabinet said in a news release that 13 victims of Friday's attack remained hospitalized in Cairo and the southern province of Minya where the attack took place. Authorities had previously said 28 were killed.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack. The bloodshed came on the eve of the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

Hours after Friday's attack, President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi announced that Egypt had launched airstrikes against militant training bases in Libya.

Senior Egyptian officials said fighter jets targeted bases in eastern Libya of the Shura Council, an Islamist militia known to be linked to al-Qaida, not the Islamic State grop. There was no immediate word on damage or casualties.

El-Sissi told Pope Towadros II, the pope of the Coptic church in Egypt, in a phone call on Friday that the state would not rest easy until the perpetrators of the attack were punished.

El-Sissi declared a three-month state of emergency following the targeting of two churches north of Cairo on Palm Sunday. In December, a suicide bomber targeted a Cairo church. The three attacks, for which the Islamic State group claimed responsibility, left at least 75 people dead.

Egypt's government has been struggling for the last three years to deter militants led by an Islamic State group affiliate and centered in the Sinai peninsula.

After a visit to Egypt last month by Pope Francis, IS vowed to escalate attacks against Christians and urged Muslims to steer clear of Christian gatherings and Western embassies.


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