IS says al-Tarbiyeen tribe are apostates, claims responsibility for car bomb attack

The Islamic State-affiliated group Sinai Province released a statement on Wednesday declaring its responsibility for the car bomb that targeted members of prominent North Sinai tribe al-Tarbiyeen.

The statement added that the name of the suicide bomber was Abu Qodma el-Seinway who targeted a gathering of tribe members. The militant group alleged that the attack left 70 dead, though official security sources cite four tribesmen killed.

The militants' statement described the sons of al-Tarbiyeen tribe as "apostates" due to their cooperation with the army and police forces.

Clashes between IS-affiliated militants and the tribe have been on the rise, which recently escalated into kidnappings.

In the aftermath of the suicide bombing that targeted tribe members, video footage was released showing a militant being burned alive by a number of younger members from the tribe.

The video footage was circulated by tribe-affiliated social media accounts and showed the militant writhing in pain on the ground while being consumed by the flames.

A member of the tribe said, on condition of anonymity, that this video was released after the car bomb attack and the man was a militant who was captured and taken hostage after another attack against the tribe's headquarters in Rafah last week.

The tribe's smuggling operations have been targeted as Sinai Province has taken it upon itself to become North Sinai's "Islamic Police Authority". Among other restrictions, the militant group prohibits cigarettes.

Al-Tarbiyeen is still holding a number of militants hostage, as is Sinai Province. Sheikh Abdullah Gohamaa, a leading figure in the tribe, said al-Tarbiyeen did not deliver the militants to state security because tribe members do not want security forces to attempt a hostage exchange.

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