Egypt airstrikes kill 12 Islamic State militants

  • IANS

    IANS | Cairo

    June 21, 2017 | 01:16 AM

Representational image (Photo: Getty Images)

Egyptian military airstrikes killed 12 militants loyal to the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group in Egypt's North Sinai province, the military spokesman said in a statement.

"Based on confirmed intelligence information on a gathering of members of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis group in North Sinai, the airstrikes targeted their terror den, killing 12 highly dangerous leading members and destroying four vehicles belonging to them," military spokesman Tamer al-Refaay said in the statement on Tuesday.

Anti-government terror attacks in Egypt have killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers since the mid-2013 military overthrow of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in response to mass protests against his one-year rule, Xinhua news agency reported.

Later security crackdown killed hundreds and detained thousands of Morsi's supporters while his Muslim Brotherhood group was blacklisted as "terrorist."

Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis group, which changed its name to Sinai State and declared loyalty to the IS, claimed responsibility for most of the terrorist attacks, including those against Coptic churches that killed dozens and wounded hundreds.

On Sunday, a roadside bomb attack targeted a police vehicle in Cairo, killed two officers and wounded three conscripts. Later on Monday, army raids in North Sinai killed three extremists and arrested 23 suspects.

Security campaigns in Sinai have killed hundreds of militants and arrested a similar number of suspects over the past few years as part of the country's anti-terror war declared by former army chief and current President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi following Morsi's removal.