(PresidentialHill.com)- According to Israeli media reports, Islamic State terrorists claimed Thursday that the Israeli Air Force assisted in the assassination of a local jihadist group commander in Egypt’s Sinai Desert in April.
As the Egyptian army started a new operation against Islamic State, the terror organization claimed that Abu Omar al-Ansari, a military leader in the terror group’s so-called Sinai Province, had been killed by “Jewish jets,” according to the group’s monthly al-Naba publication.
Israel has increased its air support for the Egyptian army in its fight against jihadist group members in the northern part of the Sinai Peninsula, close to the border with the Gaza Strip.
A security source was described in the Islamic State newspaper as stating, “This severely inhibits the capacity of the Mujahideen to move and maneuver.”
It was unclear when or where al-Ansari was slain, and his death circumstances were unclear.
Egypt is waging war against an Islamic State-led insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula, growing in strength since the military deposed an elected but divisive Islamist president in 2013. Many assaults have been conducted by the terrorists, who have primarily targeted Egyptian security personnel and Christian communities.
On Saturday, suspected Islamic State militants detonated a natural gas pipeline in northern Sinai, killing nine people.
According to reports from 2018, Israeli drones, fighter planes, and helicopter gunships conducted more than 100 airstrikes on Islamic State-affiliated militants in the vicinity of Israel’s border over a two-year period in the area.
And over three decades of formal peace, despite close security collaboration between Jerusalem and Cairo, the connections are unpopular in Egypt.
Israeli planes are typically unmarked and utilize roundabout routes to hide the origin of the strikes to keep the collaboration under wraps.