UNSC slams Egypt terrorist attacks

IANS| Last Updated: Jan 31, 2015, 04:00 AM IST

The UN Security Council (UNSC) Friday condemned "in the strongest terms" the terrorist attacks in Egypt`s North Sinai peninsula, which killed over 30 people and injured several others.

In a statement released here, the UNSC underlined the need to bring the perpetrators, organisers and sponsors of the terrorist attacks to justice, and urged all states to cooperate with the Egyptian government in this regard, according to a Xinhua report.

"The members of the (UN) Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and that any act of terrorism is criminal and unjustifiable regardless of their motivation, wherever and whenever and by whomsoever committed," the statement said.

Earlier in the day, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon also slammed the deadly attacks and expressed condolences to the families of the victims.

The US also condemned the attacks and a US State Department statement said that the government remained steadfast in its support of Egypt`s efforts to combat terrorism, as part of the strategic partnership between the two countries.

On Thursday, militants fired a barrage of rockets and set off car bombs in security premises in Arish, the capital city of the North Sinai province, killing at least 33 people and injuring dozens of others. The attacks extended to two big security checkpoints in nearby Rafah city.

Egypt has recently extended a curfew in many parts of North Sinai for another three months owing to the unstable security conditions in the area amid recurrent terrorist attacks on security staff and facilities.

Anti-security attacks have gripped Sinai and other parts of Egypt since the ouster of the Islamist president Mohamed Morsi by the military in July 2013 and the following crackdown on his supporters.

Most of the attacks were claimed by the Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis group, which has been inspired by the Al Qaeda.

The group recently changed its name to "Sinai State" after pledging loyalty to the Islamic State (IS), the radical Sunni jihadi group that has seized large swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria.