Egypt's top prosecutor referred on Saturday eight suspected militants to military prosecution, accusing them of targeting security forces and Copts.
Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat charged the eight defendants with the establishment of a terrorist group which targets members of the police and armed forces and Coptic citizens, possession of firearms and explosive devices and attempted murder. They were also accused of attempting to blow up a military train and kidnap a nun.
The defendants allegedly belong to a militant group called "Gond Allah" (soldiers of Allah), which was established in mid 2014. The group is accused of pledging allegiance to Islamic State fighters in Iraq and Syria.
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi issued on October 27, 2014 a new law which refers crimes committed against the state's public and "vital" facilities to the military judiciary.
The law, criticised by human rights organisations for expanding the jurisdiction of military tribunals on civilians, was passed shortly after the death of at least 33 security personnel in militant attacks in Sinai.
The law can be applied on cases which have not yet been referred to court, even if the events took place before the law’s issuance.