Egyptian troops killed three suspected militants late on Saturday in fresh assaults in North Sinai, where the military is battling a growing Islamist insurgency, security sources told Al-Ahram’s Arabic news website.
Fourteen others were arrested in raids in the southern part of the provincial capital of Al-Arish as part of a broad military campaign aimed to battle surging militancy.
On Friday, the Sinai based Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, a militant group that has sworn allegiance to Islamic State, claimed responsibility for two deadly attacks that killed at least 31 soldiers on 24 october, in the deadliest violence since the 2013 ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.
The army has since struggled to crush militant violence based in the border Sinai Peninsula which has killed hundreds of police and troops.
Speaking directly to President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi in a video message, the group vowed further attacks against the security forces.
Earlier on Saturday, a military spokesperson said troops killed ten other militants in the peninsula and arrested 54 “terrorist elements” in the governorates of North Sinai, Ismailia and Dakahliya.
Last month, Egypt began demolishing houses and clearing residents along its border with Gaza to set up a buffer zone aimed at deterring militant infiltration and arms smuggling.
The move came in the aftermath of the deadly October attacks.