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Egypt Mosque Attack As Death Toll Rises

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Imam Mohamed Abdelfatah, the imam at the mosque in Egypt where more than 300 people were killed has recounted the moment gunmen stormed the building.

According to him,  they were “shooting anyone who was breathing”.

The Imam was about to deliver his Friday sermon at the al Rawdah mosque in Bir al Abed, North Sinai, when dozens of attackers opened fire and threw grenades at the estimated 500 worshippers inside.

Speaking from a hospital bed in Sharqiya, Mr Abdelfatah said: “About two minutes after I climbed onto the platform, I heard what sounded like an explosion outside the mosque, and then some people came inside firing at all the worshippers.

“Of course, as soon as people heard the firing, they all started to run, some people climbed onto the platform, I saw them piled on top of each other, and they (the assailants) were hitting anybody and everybody, anybody who was breathing.

“I didn’t see their numbers, I didn’t see what they looked like, I could only feel their presence inside the mosque.”

A stampede occurred as people rushed for an exit, while others tried desperately to force their way out of windows.

When the violence finally stopped, more than 300 people were dead, including 27 children, and 128 others were injured.

Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack which is the deadliest in Egypt’s modern history, but officials say the gunmen brandished an Islamic State flag as they opened fire.

Al Rawdah mosque was largely attended by Sufi Muslims, a strand of Islam which militants consider heretic.

On Saturday Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi declared three days of mourning and vowed to “respond with brutal force” to the atrocity.

“The army and police will avenge our martyrs and return security and stability with force in the coming short period,” he said in a televised speech.

Hours later Egyptian air force jets pursued the “terrorists and discovered several vehicles used in the terrorist attack, killing those inside near the vicinity of the attack”, an army spokesman said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Theresa May has told President al Sisi that the UK “stands ready to help in any way possible”.

Downing Street said the two leaders agreed that continued bilateral co-operation in the area was needed.

A No 10 spokesman said “they agreed that terrorism was an international problem and that it was important for

countries to work closely together and share expertise to counter the growing threat of terrorism around the world”. According to apnews.

Imam Mohamed Abdelfatah, the imam at the mosque in Egypt where more than 300 people were killed has recounted the moment gunmen stormed the building.

According to him,  they were “shooting anyone who was breathing”.

The Imam was about to deliver his Friday sermon at the al Rawdah mosque in Bir al Abed, North Sinai, when dozens of attackers opened fire and threw grenades at the estimated 500 worshippers inside.

Speaking from a hospital bed in Sharqiya, Mr Abdelfatah said: “About two minutes after I climbed onto the platform, I heard what sounded like an explosion outside the mosque, and then some people came inside firing at all the worshippers.

“Of course, as soon as people heard the firing, they all started to run, some people climbed onto the platform, I saw them piled on top of each other, and they (the assailants) were hitting anybody and everybody, anybody who was breathing.

“I didn’t see their numbers, I didn’t see what they looked like, I could only feel their presence inside the mosque.”

A stampede occurred as people rushed for an exit, while others tried desperately to force their way out of windows.

When the violence finally stopped, more than 300 people were dead, including 27 children, and 128 others were injured.

Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack which is the deadliest in Egypt’s modern history, but officials say the gunmen brandished an Islamic State flag as they opened fire.

Al Rawdah mosque was largely attended by Sufi Muslims, a strand of Islam which militants consider heretic.

On Saturday Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi declared three days of mourning and vowed to “respond with brutal force” to the atrocity.

“The army and police will avenge our martyrs and return security and stability with force in the coming short period,” he said in a televised speech.

Hours later Egyptian air force jets pursued the “terrorists and discovered several vehicles used in the terrorist attack, killing those inside near the vicinity of the attack”, an army spokesman said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Theresa May has told President al Sisi that the UK “stands ready to help in any way possible”.

Downing Street said the two leaders agreed that continued bilateral co-operation in the area was needed.

A No 10 spokesman said “they agreed that terrorism was an international problem and that it was important for

countries to work closely together and share expertise to counter the growing threat of terrorism around the world”. According to apnews.

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