Egyptian forces accidently kill 12 Mexican civilians
Egyptian police and army forces have accidentally opened fire on a Mexican tourist convoy during clashes with militants, killing 12 people and injuring several others, Egypt’s Interior Ministry says.
“The incident resulted in the death of 12 Mexicans and Egyptians and the injury of 10 others who have been transferred to hospitals,” the ministry said in a statement early on Monday.
The incident occurred as the tourists were traveling in four buses in the Wahat area of the North African country’s Western Desert, which is popular with foreign tourists but is also attractive to militants.
“A joint force from the police and military, whilst chasing terrorist elements in the oasis area of the Western Desert tonight, accidentally engaged four four-wheel drives belonging to a Mexican tourist group,” the statement said, adding that the vehicles had entered an area “off limits to foreign tourists.”
The Mexican Foreign Ministry also confirmed that at least two of its national had been killed in the incident.
Meanwhile, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto condemned the attack on the tourists, urging the Egyptian government to carry out a full investigation into the incident.
Earlier on Sunday, Daesh militants operating in Egypt also released a statement on Twitter, saying the Takfiri group had repelled an attack by the Egyptian military in the Western Desert.
The incident comes a day after the Egyptian army announced that its forces had killed nearly 300 militants during military operations over the past week.
This comes as Egypt has been witnessing deadly attacks carried out by Daesh-linked Takfiri militants in the Sinai Peninsula since the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.
Velayat Sinai terrorists have claimed responsibility for most of the attacks in Sinai Peninsula. Last November, the group pledged allegiance to the Daesh terrorist group, which is wreaking havoc primarily in Iraq and neighboring Syria.