Egypt's army foils militants attempt to cross Libyan border

Ahmed Eleiba , Sunday 16 Jul 2017

The Egyptian army says it destroyed a number of trucks laden with weapons and explosives

Snapshat from a footage of the operation provided on Sunday by the Egyptian army, July, 16, 2017 (Photo: Military spokesman's Official Facebook page)

Egypt’s army forces foiled an attempt to smuggle arms into the country through its western border with Libya, the military said Sunday.

The Egyptian air forces launched a reconnaissance mission Saturday following intelligence received that "criminals" in 4x4 vehicles were in the process of crossing into Egypt, the army said in a statement

During the operation, which ontinued into Sunday, forces destroyed 15 vehicles "laden with weapons, explosives and other smuggled items."

Forces launched a hunt to catch the "criminals," the statement added.

The Egyptian army has been conducting operations in Egypt's Western Desert to stop the infiltration of militants or the smuggling of weapons through the Egyptian-Libyan border.

In May, Egyptian fighter jets carried out air strikes against terrorist camps in Libya, hours after gunmen killed 29 Coptic Christians travelling to southern Egypt in a bus attack. Egyptian officials said terrorists in Libya were training militants who carried out the attack.

Days later, four army personnel were killed during an army operation against militants in the Western Desert's Bahariya Oasis, near the border with Libya.

Security forces have been battling an Islamist insurgency for several years in North Sinai. Militants have killed hundreds of security personnel. Egyptian troops have also killed hundreds of militants during operations in the border region.

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