Israeli-Canadian businessman killed in Egypt

Militant group named after Egyptian soldier who shot dead Israeli troops claims responsibility for the murder

The killing took place in the port city of Alexandria, on Egypt's Mediterranean coast. EPA
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An Israeli-Canadian businessman was shot dead in Egypt's port city of Alexandria on Tuesday evening in an attack claimed by a group calling itself the Vanguard of the Liberation for Martyr Mohamed Salah.

The group identified the businessman as Ziv Kiefer and accused him of being an agent of Israel's Mossad spy agency.

“We announce our responsibility for killing the criminal Israeli agent Ziv Kiefer who, under the guise of commercial activities, has been collecting information and recruiting the weak-willed to work for the Mossad,” the group said on its telegram channel.

The text was superimposed over a photograph of Mohamed Salah, an Egyptian soldier who crossed into Israel from Egypt’s Sinai peninsula in June last year and killed three Israeli troops and wounded a fourth before being shot dead.

The group also posted a picture of a man shot dead in the front seat of a car, with words “Shalom from Gaza’s children” written on the image.

Egypt's Interior Ministry confirmed the attack on Wednesday and identified the victim as “a Canadian businessman residing permanently in the country”.

It said he was the victim of a “criminal shooting accident” and that an investigation had been launched.

The Israeli embassy in Cairo did not immediately respond to The National's request for comment.

The attack comes amid widespread anger in the region over Israel's war against Hamas, which has devastated the Gaza Strip and killed about 34,800 people, according to local health officials.

Israeli media also confirmed the victim's name and quoted Israel's Foreign Ministry as saying it was working closely with Egyptian authorities and the embassy in Cairo as they investigate.

Israel's public broadcaster Kan and a number of other Israeli and Arabic-language news outlets said Mr Kiefer was the chief executive of the OK Group, an Egyptian-registered exporter of frozen fruits and vegetables.

Salah's attack was a rare confrontation between Egyptian and Israeli forces that highlighted the security challenges along the border.

On October 8, an Egyptian policeman opened fire on a group of Israeli tourists visiting Pompey's Pillar, a Roman-era landmark in Alexandria.

Two Israeli tourists and their Egyptian tour guide died in the attack while another Egyptian was wounded.

Egypt and Israel have maintained a cold peace since the signing of the Camp David Accords in 1979, which ended decades of conflict between the two nations.

While diplomatic ties have remained stable, there has been occasional tension, particularly regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Updated: May 08, 2024, 9:39 AM