Egypt air stike in Sinai kills 7 militants

Egypt air stike in Sinai kills 7 militants
Sat Feb 1, 2014 15:16:26

The Egyptian army has announced an air strike in the Sinai Peninsula that led to the killing 0f seven militants after they downed a military helicopter in the restive region nearly a week ago.

The army further claimed in a Thursday night statement that its air raid targeted militants linked to the Muslim Brotherhood of ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi, which the military-installed authorities in the country have labeled as a terrorist organization despite its repeated condemnation of militant attacks against the security forces.

The air strike targeted four houses of "dangerous extremists linked to the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood group" south of the North Sinai town of Sheikh Zwayed, the army said, adding that seven militants were killed and five wounded.

The development comes after the militants shot down a military helicopter in the Sinai on January 25, killing five soldiers as Egyptians marked the third anniversary of the Arab Spring uprising that toppled the country’s US-backed dictator and former air force general Hosni Mubarak.

This is while the al-Qaeda-llinked group Ansar Bait al-Maqdis (Partisans of Jerusalem) claimed responsibility for the downing, which was only belatedly acknowledged by the military after several days of insisting that it had been an accident.

The Sinai-based group has claimed a spate of attacks against the security forces in recent months, not only in the desert peninsula but also in the heart of the capital.

The day before the helicopter downing, it claimed four bomb attacks against police targets in Cairo which killed six people, including a car bombing just outside the perimeter fence of police headquarters.

The army has poured troops into the Sinai in a bid to crush the militants but despite the loss of scores of police and troops since its July overthrow of Morsi, there has been no let-up in attacks.


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