Militant group Sinai Province claimed Saturday killing of seven security personnel during an incident inside the city of Al-Arish in the volatile Sinai Peninsula.
“The soldiers of the Caliphate planted two bombs: one targeted a car of the apostate military intelligence apparatus … and another targeted an armed personnel carrier of the apostate police,” the militant group said in a statement. “The statement was circulated on social media by users claiming to support the group’s ideology.”
The group said the first attack took place near the village of Zare Al-Kher, west of Al-Arish while the other took place near another village west of Al-Arish.
Egyptian officials could not confirm the claim and said only three security personnel lost their lives in incidents other than those described in the Sinai Provinces’ statement. The officials said one police conscript was shot dead by unknown assailants while he was on duty at a checkpoint in southern Al-Arish.
The other two casualties, an army conscript and an officer, were killed Saturday in Karam Al-Kawadis while attempting to disarm an improvised explosive device (IED), which exploded, the army spokesperson said Sunday.
Recently militants have launched frequent attacks against security personnel and facilities in Sinai. However army and police forces said the peninsula is under the control of the Egyptian military.
Minister of Defence Sedki Sobhi and Minister of Interior Magdy Abdel Ghaffar visited the forces in Sinai on Friday and declared “police and army forces have succeeded in controlling areas of ‘terrorist activities’”.
During the ministers’ visit, the militant group published a photo claiming that they were preparing to launch rockets, targeting security forces.
North Sinai has been the site of a growing insurgent stronghold since the ouster of former Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.