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Death toll of Egypt mosque attack rises to 305

By
Sam Howard
Egypt's state prosecutor said that more than 300 people are now dead following a militant attack on a mosque in the Sinai Peninsula. Photo by EPA-EFE/Ahmed Hassan
Egypt's state prosecutor said that more than 300 people are now dead following a militant attack on a mosque in the Sinai Peninsula. Photo by EPA-EFE/Ahmed Hassan

Nov. 25 (UPI) -- Egypt's state prosecutor said Saturday the death toll of a gun and bomb attack on a Sinai Peninsula mosque rose to 305.

A spokesman for the Egyptian military said government forces carried out a number of response airstrikes, saying in a statement obtained by CNN that it "pursued the terrorist elements, discovered and destroyed a number of vehicles that carried out the brutal terrorist killings, and killed all terrorists inside those vehicles."

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The attack, which wounded at least 128 people in addition to the dead, bore similarities to those carried out by the Islamic State, but the militant Islamic organization has not claimed responsibility.

State prosecutor Nabil Sadek, though, said the attackers carried an Islamic State flag while targeting the al-Rawdah mosque near the city of el-Arish. Sadek said as many as 30 militants began the attack by detonating a bomb before opening fire on worshippers trying to escape.

The attackers set up at the mosque's door and windows, Sadek said, according to the New York Times. To prevent worshippers from leaving the scene, they also shot at cars and responding ambulances.

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The Egyptian government has declared three days of national mourning.

"We will respond to this act with brute force against these terrorists," President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said in a televised address. "This terrorist act will strengthen our resolve, steadfastness and will to stand up to, resist and battle against terrorism."

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