The armed forces killed three and arrested 21 during operations over three days in the Sinai Peninsula, an armed forces spokesman announced Saturday.
The three men were killed in an exchange of fire between “terrorists” and “troops”. One of the men was shot “trying to escape from one of the ambushes of the armed forces”.
The operations took place between 26 and 28 November leading to the arrests of “21 individuals involved in the implementation of terrorist plots against the armed forces and civilian police”, according to the armed forces statement.
The armed forces also destroyed 45 cars and 63 motorcycles without licence plates “used in the terrorist operations” as well as “70 headquarters and meeting points” used by “terrorist elements”.
The operations also resulted in the detonation of three roadside bombs “equipped and prepared for use against the armed forces and civilian police”.
The armed forces increased their presence in the Sinai Peninsula following a deadly attack targeting security forces on 24 October, which resulted in the death of at least 27 soldiers. Sinai-based militant group Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis (ABM) claimed the attack in a video just days after it pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham. The video also included confirmation of ABM’s name change to ‘State of Sinai’.
The military has been tackling a military insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula, which increased in intensity following the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.