Seven ‘State of Sinai’ members were killed during armed forces’ operations in North Sinai, five of whom allegedly participated in the kidnapping and killing of police officer Ayman Al-Desouky.
The other two were found while observing security personnel in Rafah and Sheikh Zuweid, as announced by the military spokesman Wednesday.
The armed forces further stated that they targeted and destroyed 24 hideouts belonging to “terrorist elements”.
The military operations come following the abduction and killing of the police officer, whereby the armed forces along with Interior Ministry set out in intensive efforts to find the whereabouts of the kidnapped officer. They killed ten other “terrorist elements” during their search, according to the military spokesman’s statement Tuesday.
Al-Desouky’s body was found Tuesday morning.
The prosecution has ordered a media gag on investigations and circumstances related to the case.
Despite the armed forces’ “counterterrorism” efforts, this week witnessed rising insurgent activities targeting both civilians and security personnel. State-run news agency MENA reported that one civilian was shot and injured by unknown gunmen Monday. On the same day seven civilians’ bodies were found in different parts of Sheikh Zuweid and Rafah, according to state-owned newspaper Al-Ahram.
Earlier this week two decapitated bodies were found in Sheikh Zuweid as well.
Mostafa, a local Sheikh Zuweid resident, told Daily News Egypt that the current situation within Sheikh Zuweid is relativity stable, and security campaigns have set out to look for militants towards south Sheikh Zuweid, while the sounds of explosions are heard every now and then.
He added that a rumour is circulating about the body of a civilian found in South Arish; however nothing has been confirmed.