Egyptian troops on Friday killed what they described as one of the most dangerous militants in the restive North Sinai region, where an Islamist insurgency is taking its toll.
Nour El-Hamedein was killed in a shootout with army forces in a road near the Touma village in the Sinai town of Sheik Zuweid, army spokesman Colonel Ahmed Ali said in a statement.
Forces targeted the slain man and shot him after he refused to heed orders to halt and surrender, the statement added
Militant groups, who had already expanded their activities in the peninsula since the January 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak, have stepped up their attacks since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi last summer.
Almost 500 people, mostly policemen and soldiers, have been killed since by militant attacks since Morsi’s ouster. In recent months, the violence has spread from Sinai to the capital Cairo and the surrounding Nile Delta region.
Egypt has poured troops and armour into the peninsula to combat the growing insurgency while waging a sustained crackdown on Islamists elsewhere — principally Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood group.
Air and ground offensives by the military have killed dozens of militants. Hundreds others were arrested and dozens militant hideouts and arms caches were destroyed.