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Friday, July 28, 2017

Roadside explosion in Sinai kills five Egyptian policemen

A special police officer stands on a police car during the funeral of Syed Tafshan, who died in clashes with residents of the Nile island of al-Warraq when security forces attempted to demolish illegal buildings, in the south of Cairo, Egypt July 16, 2017. /REUTERS
A special police officer stands on a police car during the funeral of Syed Tafshan, who died in clashes with residents of the Nile island of al-Warraq when security forces attempted to demolish illegal buildings, in the south of Cairo, Egypt July 16, 2017. /REUTERS

Five Egyptian policemen were killed and six wounded on Monday by two roadside explosions in the restive Sinai Peninsula, security sources told Reuters.

The five policemen were killed in the city of Arish, the capital of North Sinai province, when their armoured vehicle drove past a roadside bomb, the sources said. Three others were wounded.

Another armoured vehicle rushed to the scene only for a second roadside bomb to go off, injuring three policemen. Militants planted the explosives and detonated them remotely as the vehicles drove by, the sources said.

An Interior Ministry official confirmed the deaths to the state news agency.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility but Egypt faces an insurgency led by Islamic State in North Sinai, where hundreds of soldiers and police have been killed since 2013, when the military ousted Islamist president Mohamed Mursi after mass protests.

Islamic State has also increasingly carried out attacks in the mainland on security forces and Coptic Christian civilians in recent months, killing around 100 Copts since December.

Military jets have been carrying out air strikes in areas east of Arish and south of the border town of Sheikh Zuweid.

At least 23 soldiers were killed when suicide car bombs tore through two military checkpoints in North Sinai on Friday, an attack claimed by Islamic State that marked one of the bloodiest assaults on security forces in years.


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