Three army officers, seven soldiers killed in militant hideout raid in Central Sinai

Ahram Online , Thursday 23 Mar 2017

The personnel were killed when an IED detonated in their vehicles as they were attempting to chase militants during the raid

Army in Sinai
File Photo: Egyptian Army soldiers patrol in an armored vehicle backed by a helicopter gunship during a sweep through villages in Sheikh Zuweyid, North Sinai (Photo: Reuters)

Three army officers and seven soldiers were killed on Wednesday during a raid on a militant hideout in Central Sinai, the army's spokesman said on Thursday.

In an official statement, spokesman Tamer El-Refai said ten army members were killed after “two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) detonated in their vehicles as they were attempting to chase militants.”

El-Refai said the forces killed 15 militants and arrested seven others during the raid.

He said the army also destroyed two storehouses, which were used to store half a tonne of TNT, IEDs, and subsistence and medical equipment used by the militants.

Forces confiscated two four-wheel vehicles, explosives, 460 laptops, 640 cellphones, and several vehicle plates used by the militants.

Thursday’s announcement comes only a few days after the army said in two separate statements that it had killed 18 “extremely dangerous terrorists” in different parts of restive North Sinai and arrested 37 suspects.

Egypt’s army and police forces have been battling a North Sinai-based Islamist insurgency that intensified following the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

Despite the relative infrequency of attacks in Central Sinai compared to North Sinai, security forces have recently aimed to tighten their grip on the area through a number of anti-terror operations.

Hundreds of security personnel have been killed in terror attacks by militants in recent years, while the army says it has killed hundreds of militants in security campaigns in the governorate. 

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