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Global condemnations follow attack on Egyptian army in North Sinai

Global condemnations follow attack on Egyptian army in North Sinai”

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi describes Islamist militancy as an existential threat to Egypt, which has increasingly seen attacks move beyond the war-torn Sinai Peninsula and deep into the mainland, often targeting Christians.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attacks in Sinai so far.

Egypt's armed forces killed 40 militants Friday after suicide bombing and shooting on an army check point in North Sinai that killed at least 10 soldiers, the army said in a statement.

The sources said the militants belong to Sinai-based Sinai State group, which declared loyalty to the Islamic State (IS) group in 2014.

It was not immediately possible to obtain an official casualty toll. They later told The Associated Press that more bodies were retrieved from the rubble of a demolished building at the site.

Security sources described Friday's attack as a coordinated strike, with auto bombs blowing apart checkpoints as gunmen in four-wheel drive vehicles shot down soldiers running for cover.

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At least 26 soldiers were killed or injured after being targeted by vehicle bombs, the statement said without elaborating the number of those killed and injured separately.

The militants arrived at the checkpoint, which is in a remote desert area, in 24 SUVs, and shot at the soldiers with machine guns for almost half an hour, the officials said.

The dead included a high-ranking special forces officer, Colonel Ahmed el-Mansi, and at least 20 others were wounded in the attack.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak to the media.

In the past four years, Egypt has endured multiple terror attacks primarily perpetrated by ISIS groups in the Sinai. It did not name their affiliation.



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