IS attack on Christian pilgrims in Egypt kills 7, wounds 19

The Coptic Orthodox Church of the Virgin Mary in Cairo’s Shubra al Kheima district was the target of a previous attack

The Coptic Orthodox Church of the Virgin Mary in Cairo’s Shubra al Kheima district was the target of a previous attack

The attack took place nearly at the exact location where 28 Christians were killed by Islamist militants in 2017.

Islamic militants on Friday ambushed three buses carrying Christian pilgrims on their way to a remote desert monastery south of the Egyptian capital of Cairo, killing seven and wounding 19, according to the Coptic Orthodox Church and the Interior Ministry.

Egyptians check on their relative, who was wounded after gunmen attacked a bus carrying Coptic Christians, at the Sheikh Fadel hospital in Beni Mazar on November 2, 2018.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the shooting.

The incident took place on Friday as they were driving to the Saint Samuel Coptic Christian monastery near Minya, a city about 270-kilometres south of Cairo.

El-Sissi, who has made the economy and security his top priorities since taking office in 2014, wrote on his Twitter account that Friday's attack was created to harm the "nation's solid fabric" and pledged to continue fighting terrorism.

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"I mourn with great sorrow the victims who fell today at the traitorous hands that seek to undermine the nation's fabric", Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said in a statement.

In April 2017, twin suicide bombings, claimed by Islamic State, targeted two Coptic churches, killing 48 people.

A young boy grieves next to the coffins of his parents who were killed during a bus attack, during their funeral service at Ava Samuel desert monastery in Minya, Egypt, May 26, 2017.

Egypt has witnessed a spate of militant attacks since 2013, when the army deposed Islamist president Mohammad Morsi, the country's first democratically elected leader, after mass protests against his rule.

Egyptian authorities have also convicted jihadists for their role in attacks against Copts.

Egypt's Christians account for some 10 percent of the country's 100 million people.

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