Egypt’s government decided to execute the top militant suspect Hisham al-Ashmawy for his links to al-Qaeda. The jihadist was executed on Wednesday following his conviction over several high-profile attacks, according to a defence ministry spokesman.
The executed citizen of Egypt was a former special forces officer who led the Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, known as Egypt’s most active militant group prior pledging allegiance to ISIS in 2014.
As Reuters reports, Ashmawy then moved with a group of followers to Egypt’s Western Desert, later crossing the border to Libya to join the al Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Sharia. Over four years, the well-trained Egyptian officer was serving to the destructive movements led by jihadists.
Al-Ashmawy was captured in the east Libyan city of Derna in late 2018 and transferred to Egypt in May 2019. The ex-officer was convicted on several charges including plotting a 2014 attack that killed 22 military guards, and the attempted assassination of a former interior minister in 2013.
In 2020, military and civilian courts had sentenced him to death before and after his extradition to Egypt. The military spokesman posted a picture of Ashmawy with a thick beard dressed in orange prison overalls on Twitter.
“This morning the death penalty was carried out on the terrorist Hisham al-Ashmawy,” the official wrote.