Islamic State claims responsibility for Egypt attack that killed 29 Christians

The Islamic State group on Saturday claimed responsibility for the attack on a bus carrying Christians on their way to a remote desert monastery south of the Egyptian capital, Cairo, which killed 29.

Egypt responded to Friday’s attack by launching a series of airstrikes that targeted what it said were militant bases in eastern Libya in which the assailants were trained. On Saturday, the military said on its official Facebook page that the airstrikes were continuing “day and night” and that they have “completely” destroyed their targets. It gave no details.

“What you’ve seen today will not go unpunished. An extremely painful strike has been dealt to the bases. Egypt will never hesitate to strike terror bases anywhere,” President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said in a televised address to the nation late Friday. He said the attacks on Christians aimed at driving a wedge between them and the country’s Muslim majority.

He also appealed to U.S. President Donald Trump to lead the global war against terror.

The claim, published by the group’s Ammaq news agency, takes to four the number of deadly attacks targeting Christians since December that the extremist group says it’s behind. The claim put the death toll at 32, but there was no immediate explanation for the discrepancy.

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