Over 50 policemen killed in clashes with terrorists in Egypt

Posted October 23, 2017

At least 52 Egyptian police and conscripts were killed and six more wounded in a gun battle on Friday during a raid on a suspected militant hideout in the western desert, three security sources said.

The Ministry said that the police forces killed and injured 15 terrorists during the clashes.

Egypt has been struggling to contain an insurgency by Islamic militants led by an affiliate of the Islamic State group, centred mostly across the Suez Canal, in the northern region of the Sinai Peninsula, but attacks on the mainland have also recently increased.

The statement added that the Interior Ministry's National Security Service received information about the location of unsafe militants taking shelter in the Western Desert's kilo 135, and then a raid was ordered to be launched.

The statement said that the forces were looking for terrorists in the surrounding areas. The group has claimed attacks around Cairo targeting judges and police.

The policemen were killed in the exchange of fire with terrorists late yesterday in el-Wahat desert in Giza governorate, about 135 kilometres from the capital. Clashes erupted when they tried to arrest them and they exchanged fire.

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While the forces were moving towards the area, they were ambushed by militants who fired rocket-propelled grenades and detonated explosive devices.

No militant group immediately claimed involvement in the firefight.

The armed group staging the campaign later pledged allegiance to ISIL in 2014.

Earlier this month, Sisi extended for a second time a state of emergency, first declared after bombings claimed by IS in two churches that killed at least 45 people in April.

Terror attacks in Egypt used to be centered in North Sinai before spreading nationwide and killing hundreds of policemen and soldiers over the past few years.