In the continuation of an ongoing military retaliation campaign executed by the Egyptian Armed Forces against the IS-affiliated group “Sinai Province” in North Sinai, the army official spokesperson declared on Tuesday evening that six militants and two army personnel were killed.
Six militants and two army personnel were killed on the fourth day of the ongoing retaliation campaign against “Sinai Province”, the official spokesperson for the Egyptian Armed Forces stated on Tuesday evening.
The airstrikes carried out by the military have contributed effectively to affording aerial coverage to troops on the ground, according to an official statement issued by spokesperson Mohamed Samir on his official Facebook page.
The statement read: “With the aid of aerial coverage and artillery, various armed forces divisions that were conducting security sweeps successfully located seven takfiri [Islamist] stationing points/locales, killing six militants, and destroying 16 weapons stores. The clashes resulted in the martyrdom of two heroes from the armed forces.”
Elsewhere in the governorate, a police officer and a conscript were killed, and four other police personnel injured, when their armoured vehicle was targeted in a mortar attack in Al-Tarbyeen, Sheikh Zuweid.
A North Sinai-based journalist told Daily News Egypt on Wednesday: “The armoured police vehicle was targeted while it was passing through a street in the district. The perpetrators are believed to be members of the Islamic State (IS)-affiliated group ‘Sinai Province’.”
On Tuesday, President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi decided to extend the state of emergency in North Sinai for an additional three months due to deteriorating conditions in the governorate, as reported in the official gazette.
Accordingly, a curfew will be imposed daily from 7.00pm to 6.00am across all areas of North Sinai except Al-Arish city where the curfew hours will be from 1.00am to 5.00am.
The decision also stipulates that the army, with the help of police forces, will be assigned to secure the cities during curfew hours to protect citizens. Anyone breaking curfew will be detained.
In July, the parliament had approved another extension of the state of emergency in North Sinai.
Some residents previously told Daily News Egypt that these measures are ineffective in fighting terrorism. They also mentioned that their businesses are negatively affected by the curfew and that militancy has increased during curfew hours, threatening their lives.
The curfew hours were first imposed in 2014 and have been renewed every three months since then as a counter-terrorism measure.
The decision was first imposed in October 2014 as unrest escalated in North Sinai following the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi. The clashes between the Armed Forces and IS-affiliated factions have increased.