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GCC slams ‘heinous’ killings of Egyptian Copts by ISIS

Saudi Arabia its strong condemnation of the 'ISIS terrorist organization’s criminal act'

Published: Updated:

The Gulf Cooperation Council on Monday condemned as a “heinous” crime the recent killing of a group of Egyptian Copts at the hands of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the Saudi Press Agency reported.

“[GCC Secretary-General] Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani strongly condemned the killing of Egyptian hostages in Libya by the ISIS terrorist organization, describing it as a heinous terrorist crime showing the brutality of the perpetrators and their deviation away from the true Islamic religion and its noble values,” according to the SPA.

He urged the international community to intensity it efforts against the Islamic militant group.

At dawn Monday, the Egyptian air force bombed ISIS targets in Libya, a day after the militant group released a video purporting to show the execution of 21 Egyptian Copts there.

Nascent groups pledging allegiance to ISIS have sprouted in different parts of the Middle East, including Libya.

The militant group, which gained prominence last 2014 after seizing large territories in Syria and Iraq, seeks to establish an Islamic “caliphate” and has executed civilians as part of its campaign.

Also Monday, Saudi Arabia, a leading member of the GCC, condemned the killing of the Egyptians.

“The Council of Ministers expressed strong condemnation of the ISIS terrorist organization’s criminal act of killing 21 Coptic Egyptians in the city of Derna,” according to a statement carried by the SPA.

The Saudi Cabinet also expressed condolences to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the Egyptian government and the Egyptian people.

The Saudi government also welcomed the unanimous adoption at the United Nations Security Council of resolution 2199, which urges member states to prevent terrorist groups in Iraq and Syria from benefiting from trade in oil, antiquities and hostages, and from receiving donations.

The Saudi Cabinet said it was “at the forefront of countries calling for fighting terrorism, renouncing it and criminalizing its supporters.”