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Egyptian Authorities Heavily Strike Terrorist Groups in Sinai, Alexandria | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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An Egyptian army soldier looks on from his position at a checkpoint in al-Arish city, the troubled northern part of the Sinai peninsula, July 8, 2015. Reuters

Cairo- The Egyptian Air Forces launched on Monday an air strike that targeted a gathering of leading figures from the ISIS-affiliated group ‘Sinai Province’ in North Sinai.

Egypt’s security forces killed 15 militants, 12 of them in airstrikes in the restive Sinai peninsula and three in the coastal city of Alexandria, according to two separate statements by the Interior Ministry and the armed forces on Tuesday.

According to a statement issued from the Egyptian Armed Forces official spokesperson Tamer El Refaay, the strike was launched following the army leadership’s receiving information from intelligence apparatuses on the gathering place of Sinai Province’s leading figures.

“The Egyptian Air Forces executed an air strike on a gathering place of a number of Ansar Beit al-Maqdis (currently known as ‘Sinai Province’)leading figures; it targeted their gathering place, and it killed 12 militants from the group and destroyed four vehicles” the army’s statement read.

The ‘Sinai Province’ group said it believes that all army and police forces are apostates who should be killed; therefore, the group’s militants have launched several suicide and ground attacks that have led to the death of many army and police personnel.

In a separate development, Egypt’s Interior Ministry stated that that three other militants belonging to a shadowy group calling itself the Hasm Movement were killed in an apartment raid in Alexandria.

The ministry added that they were killed in an exchange of fire.

The militant group, which is suspected of links to the banned Muslim Brotherhood, claimed responsibility for a deadly roadside bombing earlier this week, in the Egyptian capital’s upscale suburb of Maadi, killing one police officer and wounding four others. The group has previously claimed several smaller attacks, mainly targeting policemen.

Insurgent attacks have dramatically increased in Egypt since the military ouster of elected President Mohammed Morsi, ending the Islamist leader’s divisive, one-year rule. The violence has been concentrated in the northern Sinai Peninsula, where ISIS-linked militants are battling the army.