Middle East expert Dr. Dror Manor told Arutz Sheva on Monday that the terrorist attack by the Islamic State (ISIS) in the Sinai Peninsula at the end of last week was intended to convey a message to the world that the group still exists.
"Despite the defeats in Syria, they want to show that they still have the manpower and weapons to carry out horrific attacks against innocent people," said Manor, who said he believes Egypt will respond to the attack, in which 305 people were murdered.
"There was an attempt here to humiliate Egypt and to show that ISIS terrorists are the ones controlling the Sinai Peninsula. The Egyptian army, which is a strong army and has accumulated great skill in the war against ISIS, includes secret units and commando units that operate against the organization and will do everything possible to eradicate it.”
Manor noted that despite all the defeats in Syria, ISIS still has a significant presence on the map. "The organization suffers from a severe economic crisis and a shortage of cash, but it still has volunteers all over the world who work for it. It's true that the organization has sustained damage at the operational level, but it still has capabilities to carry out terror attacks.”
"Israel, too, has a finger on the pulse, due to the fact that there have already been a few Israeli Arabs who joined ISIS. At this stage, however, ISIS’s real desire is to harm other targets - not Israel and Jews," concluded Dr. Manor.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi vowed last week to respond “using brute force” to the terrorist attack on a Sufi mosque in the Sinai.
Egypt has been battling a jihadist insurgency in the Sinai for years. Most of the attacks in the Sinai Peninsula have been claimed by the Sinai Province, the Egyptian affiliate of the Islamic State (ISIS) which pledged allegiance to the jihadists in 2014.