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Egypt executes 15 militants over terrorism charges

By Sara Shayanian
Egypt executes 15 militants over terrorism charges
Egyptian supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood protest following the military coup in Cairo, Egypt on July 5, 2013. Shooting could be heard coming from both the Republican Guard and the ranks of the protesters. UPI/Ahmed Jomaa | License Photo

Dec. 26 (UPI) -- Egypt executed 15 people on Tuesday after they were convicted on terrorism charges for an attack on armed forces in North Sinai in 2013.

The militants were executed at the Prison of Wadi Al Natrun, west of Cairo, and the Prison of Burj Al Arab in the Mediterranean Sea city of Alexandria.

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The Egyptian Interior Ministry oversaw the executions.

The inmates had been convicted of "acts of violence" and were executed after court rulings against them became final.

Ezzat Ghonein, director of the Egyptian Coordination for Rights and Freedoms, said the militants were convicted for taking part in violence in the city of Al-Arish located in the northern Sinai Peninsula following the 2013 military coup.

Prosecutors accused the defendants of "targeting military personnel" and "possessing illegal weapons" --- charges the suspects denied in court.

Militants have been increasingly targeting security forces around Mount Sinai since the army overthrew Islamist president Mohammed Morsi in 2013.

Last month, over 300 people were killed by a gun and bomb attack on a Sinai Penninsula mosque.

President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi vowed to combat the terrorists.

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"We will respond to this act with brute force against these terrorists," 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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