A US-made Egyptian army Apache attack helicopters flies from an airfield in an operation against militant hideouts in the insurgency-wracked North Sinai. PHOTO: AFP
CAIRO: Egyptian security forces killed 10 militants in an exchange of fire and arrested 400 suspects, including foreigners, in a continuing crackdown in Sinai, the army said in a statement carried by state TV on Tuesday.
Based on army statements, around 38 militants have been killed since the latest offensive to crush insurgents blamed for a string of attacks began.
Egypt launched a major security operation on Friday involving the army and police against “terrorist and criminal elements and organisations” across the country, according to the army spokesperson.
President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who is seeking re-election in March, ordered the armed forces in November to defeat militants within three months after an attack on a mosque killed more than 300 people, the deadliest such violence in the Arab world’s most populous country.
The insurgency poses the greatest challenge to the government in a country that is both the most populous in the Arab World and a main regional ally of the United States. Sisi was elected for his first term in 2014 after the army ousted President Mohamed Mursi following mass protests against his rule.
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The Grand Imam of Cairo’s Al-Azhar mosque urged the armed forces to fight and destroy the insurgency
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