Egypt appoints member of terror group that once massacred tourists to run tourism region
It was only 16 years ago, in 1997, that members of an Egyptian militant group called Gamaa Islamiya stormed the ancient Temple of Hatshepsut in Luxor, a tourism magnet, and massacred 62 tourists before killing themselves, part of their insurgent campaign against the government. This week, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi swore in Adel Mohamed al-Khayat, a former leader of Gamaa Islamiya and now a member of its political arm, as the new governor of Luxor governorate.
Gamaa Islamiya swore off violence and denounced al-Qaeda a decade ago. But they are still listed by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist group, which cites a number of other terrorist attacks before the group’s 1999 about-face and says that part of the group never renounced violence. Khayat joined Gamaa before it renounced violence and he was serving as one of its leaders, according to Reuters, when the 1997 attack took place, albeit in a different province.