Egypt's army kills 14 terrorists in reprisal raids for mosque attack



At least 14 terrorists were killed and 14 other suspects were arrested in Egyptian police and military raids inside and near North Sinai province, official security statements said on Tuesday.

A statement from the Interior Ministry on Tuesday said that a raid on a farm in Ismailia province northeastern the capital Cairo and western North Sinai province killed 11 terrorists who exchanged fire with the police during the raid.

The farm was used by the terrorists for shelter, training and storage of weapons and explosives to prepare for their aggressive operations against the state, said the statement.

Other raids in the provinces of Ismailia, Sharqiya and North Sinai arrested nine terrorist suspects with a large number of wireless devices and bike spare parts to be smuggled and handed to terrorists in North Sinai.

On the other hand, the military spokesman said in a statement on Tuesday that army raids in central Sinai, the southern part of North Sinai, killed three extremists, arrested five others, seized a truck loaded with a large amount of explosive material and destroyed eight hideouts used by the terrorists.

The police and military raids are part of continued campaigns launched over the past couple of days since a terrorist attack on Friday against a mosque in a small village in North Sinai killed at least 305 worshippers and wounded 128 others in the bloodiest attack and the first against a Muslim mosque in the country's modern history.

Although no group has yet claimed responsibility for the mosque attack, fingers are pointed at a Sinai-based group loyal to the Islamic State (IS) regional terrorist group, which has claimed most of the large terrorist operations in Egypt over the past few years.

Terror attacks rose in Egypt following the military ouster of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 in response to mass protests against his one-year rule and his currently outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.

Since then, most of the attacks focused on restive North Sinai and killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers, before they later started to extend to other provinces and target the Copts at churches and most recently to Muslims at a mosque.