The Egyptian Armed Forces in North Sinai killed eight militants during a large-scale security sweep being carried out in the cities of Sheikh Zuweid, Rafah, and Al-Arish. Meanwhile, four militants were arrested during the campaign, according to a Tuesday statement by the army spokesperson.
The forces assigned to the operation were able to securely detonate improvised explosive devices (IEDs) planted on roads that are often used by the armed forces.
In November, 12 army conscripts died and 13 were injured in an attack that targeted Al-Gaz army checkpoint in Al-Sabeel village.
The attack in Al-Arish was carried out using rocket-propelled grenade launchers (RPG), AK-47 assault rifles, and a vehicle laden with explosives. The conscripts and officers at the checkpoint opened fire on the vehicle.
Right after reports of the attack circulated on social media, the armed forces issued a statement clarifying that the attack left eight conscripts dead after a “terrorist militant group” launched the attack with four-wheel drive vehicles, which contained a massive amount of explosives.
Since 2013, state security forces have been engaged in violent clashes with “Sinai Province”, known previously as Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis. In 2014, the group declared its affiliation to IS and has launched deadly attacks on army and police checkpoints.
Over the course of the last two years, the Egyptian Armed Forces launched counterattacks against militant stationing points across the Sinai Peninsula where the group is based, particularly in North Sinai.
Despite numerous statements issued by the armed forces on mass killings of militants, the group still represents a “chronic headache” to the current regime.