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UAE Calls Egyptian Hostage Killings By ISIL “An Ugly Crime”

UAE Calls Egyptian Hostage Killings By ISIL “An Ugly Crime”

The UAE’s president and other leaders condemned the killings and affirmed their support to Egypt in rooting out such radical groups.

The UAE’s senior leaders, including the country’s president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, condemned the killing of 21 Egyptian citizens by the militant group ISIL, calling the incident “an ugly crime”.

A video released by ISIL this week showed the group beheading 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians who went to Libya in search for work.

In comments published by state news agency WAM, Sheikh Khalifa condemned the killings and expressed full support for Egypt in its fight against such insurgent groups.

“We are with you and by your side in any steps and measures you take to eradicate terrorism, and all terrorist organisations,” he said.

“This barbaric and heinous crime strengthens our will and resolve, and reinforces our cooperation with our allies in facing the threats of the criminal organisation, Daesh, in Libya, and weeding them out of the whole region.”

Meanwhile the UAE’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan said that such incidents reinforced the case for supporting a legitimate government in Libya.

“The stability of Libya and its freeing from terrorism and extremism is an absolute necessity for the Arab and international community that is also essential for the strengthening of the security of the neighbouring countries,” he said.

He added that such actions have no relation to any religion.

“These terrorist organisations and their barbaric crimes have no relationship whatsoever with any religion.

“These crimes come from sick minds that seek to spread chaos throughout the world, through the killing of innocent people for no reason.

“It is essential that these criminals should receive the punishment that they deserve, without hesitation, and implemented with the utmost strength and determination.”

In retaliation to the killings, Egypt launched air strikes against ISIL in Libya on Monday, hitting training sites and weapon storage areas in the country. More strikes are slated to be carried out on Tuesday, local media reported quoting military officials.

Following the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, a lack of strong central government in Libya has created a power vacuum for smaller rebel groups, many of which have pledged allegiance to the radical ISIL.

Libya sidled into full blown conflict last year after opposition groups seized Tripoli, causing the government forces to abandon the capital and flee east. Currently, the country is being ruled by two rival governments, with one based in Tripoli while the other is in the port city of Tobruk.

The ongoing civil conflict in the OPEC member has also affected its oil production, with its output collapsing to a fifth of what it used to produce before the uprising.

The fighting has disrupted production at most of its refineries while many oil storage tanks have also been set on fire.

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