Brazen attacks from the Islamic State have forced one country to withdraw from an international peacekeeping mission in the Sinai, while the remaining troops have been abandoning outlooks in the volatile region.
The militant group claimed responsibility and said a suicide bomber blew himself up at a security checkpoint before the mortar shelling began.
After a bomb blast ripped apart an apartment building in Giza outside of Cairo, the government was quick to blame the Muslim Brotherhood, but both the Islamic State and a militant group called Revolutionary Punishment claimed responsibility.
On a weekend trip to Erbil, in Northern Iraq, Canadian Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan opened the door to facing the Islamic State in a different part of the world — in Libya and the Sinai Peninsula.
The militant group claims an improvised explosive device in the form of a Schweppes soda can brought down the Russian airliner over Egypt, but there are reasons for skepticism.
The latest incident added to the toll of people fleeing war and repressive regimes in Africa who have died en route to Israel and Europe — a longstanding and dangerous route that has been overshadowed by Syria's refugee crisis.
An expert on Wilayat Sinai, the Islamic State’s affiliate in the Sinai Peninsula, said that infiltrating personnel at the airport of the Egyptian resort area of Sharm el-Sheikh is well within the group's capabilities.
A day after the Islamic State again claimed responsibility for downing the plane, a member of the Egyptian investigation team reportedly said that evidence indicates it was a bomb.
Hours after the Islamic State again claimed responsibility for downing the plane with 224 people aboard, anonymous US officials said evidence suggests it was a bombing.
The plane was flying from a Red Sea resort town to St. Petersburg when it went down in a desolate mountainous area of central Sinai.
Tuesday's operation is the latest fighting to erupt between the Egyptian military and the Islamist insurgency in the Sinai.