Egypt’s Armed Forces announced in a statement late Thursday that it had located and killed the head of Wilayat Sinai (formerly known as Ansar Bait Al-Maqdis) in North Sinai.
In a statement released on Facebook, the military spokesperson said that Abu Doaa Al-Ansari, the leader of the North Sinai-based group that is affiliated with ISIS, was killed along with 45 other terrorists in air strikes in the south and south-west of El-Arish.
The operations to eliminate the leader were undertaken by the air force and anti-terrorism forces and also saw the destruction of weapons and explosives storage facilities. Dozens of other ISIS fighters were also reportedly injured.
The announcement came hours after the group released a video from Egypt threatening attacks on Israel.
Wilayat Sinai, which announced allegiance to ISIS in 2014, has been responsible for the majority of terror attacks in Egypt since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.
Egypt’s military, in cooperation with local tribes, has waged a war against militancy in North Sinai, killing hundreds of suspected terrorists. An estimated 2100 people were killed in North Sinai in 2015, including roughly 1800 described by the military as “terrorists,” 150 civilians, 40 police officers and conscripts, and 140 military personnel.