Egypt's deadliest militant group said one of its founders, who led a 2011 attack in Israel, has been accidentally killed by a bomb.
Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, which has spearheaded a low-level insurgency against Egyptian soldiers and police, said Tawfiq Mohamed Fareej was killed last week when a car accident set off a bomb he was carrying.
The group, whose name means Partisans of Jerusalem in Arabic, has claimed some of the deadliest attacks on Egyptian security forces since the army overthrew Islamist president Mohamed Morsi last July.
One of the group's founders, Fareej was the "field commander" of an August 18, 2011 cross border raid into Israel that killed 8 Israelis, the group said in a statement on Friday.
He also masterminded attacks on a gas pipeline to Israel, the group said in a statement posted on militant Islamist Internet forums.
Fareej was also involved in a failed assassination attempt against the Egyptian interior minister in September.
The Sinai Peninsula-based group said Fareej moved to mainland Egypt in early 2013 and "oversaw the group's branch that carried out many operations against the regime of traitors and collaborators."
The group has claimed a series of high profile attacks in Sinai and mainland Egypt, including bombings of police headquarters and the downing of a military helicopter with a heat-seeking missile.