2016 Hurghada attack

On 8 January 2016, two suspected militants, armed with a melee weapon and a signal flare, allegedly arrived by sea and stormed the Bella Vista Hotel in the Red Sea city of Hurghada, Egypt, stabbing two foreign tourists from Austria and one from Sweden.[1][2] (Early reports incorrectly stated that the victims were one German and one Danish national.)[3] One of the attackers, 21-year-old student Mohammed Hassan Mohammed Mahfouz, was killed by police as he tried to take a woman hostage. The other attacker was injured.[4] The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility.[5][6]

2016 Hurghada attack
Part of Sinai insurgency
Red Sea in Egypt (2011).svg
Location of Red Sea Governorate in Egypt.
LocationHurghada, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
Coordinates27°15′28″N 33°48′42″E / 27.25778°N 33.81167°E / 27.25778; 33.81167
Date8 January 2016 (UTC+02:00)
Attack type
Deaths1 attacker
Injured2 foreign tourists, 1 attacker
PerpetratorsIslamic State – Sinai Province


An Egyptian court found that the attack was incited by a Syria-based operative of the Islamic State who was in contact with the perpetrators.[7]

According to The Independent, both attackers carried knives and pellet guns. According to Al Jazeera, they carried "a gun, a knife and a suicide belt."[8]

All roads into and out of Hurghada were closed as Egyptian security searched for additional attackers.[4] According to BBC security analyst Frank Gardner, the ISIS goal in inciting such attacks is to undermine crucial support tourism provides to the Egyptian economy.[4]


There were two attackers, Mohamad Hassan Mohamed Mahfouz and Mohamed Magdy Abul Kheir. Mahfouz was shot dead at the scene; Kheir was wounded. Kheir was charged with possessing ammunition and firearms, joining an illegal group, and attempted murder. He was given a life sentence.[7]

An operative of the Islamic State, Ahmad Abdel Salam Mansour, an Egyptian national operating out of Syrian, was tried in absentia by an Egyptian court on charges of having incited the two attackers. He was sentenced in absentia to life in prison.[7]


Hisham Zaazou, Egypt's Minister of Tourism, responded by announcing new security measures to protect tourists.[9]

The attack was one of 78 described by Donald Trump as underreported terrorist attacks.[10][11][12]


Egypt, which is a country that depends on tourism saw tourism nosedive during the revolution. Once the country's government began to stabilize and tourism began picking up, terrorists began targeting tourism sites.[13] Due to this and other attacks, 2016 was a "tough year" for the tourism industry in Egypt.[14]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Hanna, Jason (14 July 2017). "Egypt: 2 tourists killed, 4 injured in Hurghada knife attack". CNN. Retrieved 30 July 2017.
  2. ^ "Attack at Hotel in Egypt Injures European Tourists". The New York Times. 8 January 2016. Retrieved 6 February 2017.
  3. ^ "Egypt hotel attack: Three tourists wounded by assailants in Hurghada resort". The Independent. 8 January 2016. Archived from the original on 2022-05-01. Retrieved 6 February 2017.
  4. ^ a b c "Egypt attack: Three tourists stabbed at Hurghada hotel". BBC. 9 January 2016. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  5. ^ "ISIS Egypt Hotel Attack: Deadly Hurghada Resort Siege On Foreign Tourists Claimed By Islamic State Group". ibtimes.com. 8 January 2016. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  6. ^ Walsh, Declan (14 July 2017). "European Tourists Stabbed at a Beach Resort in Egypt; 2 Die". New York Times. Retrieved 16 July 2017.
  7. ^ a b c "Two people sentenced to life over hotel attack in Egypt's Hurghada". Al Ahram. with AFP. 25 December 2016. Retrieved 27 July 2017.
  8. ^ "Two tourists stabbed to death, four wounded in Egypt". Al Jazeera. 15 July 2017. Retrieved 27 July 2017.
  9. ^ Porter, Lizzie (11 January 2016). "Egypt makes more tourist safety promises after Hurghada hotel attack". The Telegraph. Retrieved 27 July 2017.
  10. ^ "Trump's 'Unreported Terror Attack' List Contains More Typos Than Unreported Terror Attacks". 7 February 2017.
  11. ^ Naylor, Brian; Taylor, Jessica (6 February 2017). "White House List Contradicts Trump Claim That Terror Attacks Go Unreported". NPR.
  12. ^ Sterling, Joe (8 February 2017). "How CNN covered the terror attacks on the White House list". CNN. Retrieved 27 July 2017.
  13. ^ "Attacks at Tourism Sites in Egypt". NYT. 10 June 2015.
  14. ^ Coffey, Helen (26 April 2017). "Why UK Tourists Should Consider Returning to Egypt on Holiday". The Independent. Archived from the original on 2022-05-01. Retrieved 27 July 2017.