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Egyptian officials confirm arrest of Egypt's most wanted terrorist in Libya
Last Updated: 2018-10-11 08:17 | Xinhua
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Egyptian military sources confirmed on Monday that Hisham al-Ashmawi, one of Egypt's most wanted terrorists, has been captured in Libyan eastern city of Derna, Egypt's Ahram Online reported.

It is not clear when al-Ashmawi, who has been sentenced to death in Egypt, will be handed over to the Egyptian authorities, but "an official statement will be released concerning the arrest later today," an Egyptian military source was quoted as saying.

Earlier on Monday, Ahmed Mismari, spokesman of the Libyan National Army (LNA) which controls eastern Libya, said that Ashmawi was apprehended in Derna, where eastern Libyan forces are fighting terrorist groups.

A picture of Ashmawi with blood on his face has been published by the LNA.

Ashmawi was born in 1978, and graduated in 2000 from the military academy in Egypt.

The man, also known as Abu Omar al-Mohager, is considered one of the most dangerous terrorists linked to many attacks in Egypt.

In July 2015, Ashmawi announced the establishment of the Mourabitoun organization in Libya, which is loyal to the al-Qaida terrorist organization.

He is believed to have been involved in an assassination attempt of former Egyptian Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim and the murder of top prosecutor Hisham Barakat, as well as plotting an attack on Egyptian border guards in February 2015, which resulted in the deaths of 29 Armed Forces personnel.

Ashmawi is also believed to be behind a deadly attack on Copts in Upper Egypt's Minya governorate in May 2017, which killed 29 people.

In January 2015, his group was suspected of staging a multi-pronged attack on the headquarters of the Army Battalion 101 headquarters in El-Arish in North Sinai, which killed 30 soldiers and officers.

An Egyptian military court sentenced him in absentia, along with 13 other terrorists, to death over the New Valley massacre in Farafra on 19 July, 2014, which killed 22 Egyptian border guards.

In 2007, a military court transferred Ashmawi to an administrative post before his dismissal from the army in 2011. He later joined the Sinai-based Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis terrorist group, which is now loyal to the Islamic State.

Ashmawi received training on the manufacturing of explosive materials and combat operations. In April 2016, he traveled to Syria to join Islamist militants fighting against Bashar al-Assad's regime, yet a few months later he returned to Egypt where he participated in a sit-in supporting the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group in Cairo's Rabaa al-Adaweya Square.

After the sit-in, Ashmawi escaped to Libya where he broke away from Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis after the group swore allegiance to IS, and formed the al-Qaida affiliated Al-Mourabitoun.

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Egyptian officials confirm arrest of Egypt's most wanted terrorist in Libya
Source:Xinhua | 2018-10-11 08:17
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