16 terrorists killed in Sinai operation: Egypt army

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Cairo, Feb 12 (IANS) At least 16 terrorists were killed and four others arrested in a major anti-terrorism operation launched by Egypt on Friday in Northern and Central Sinai, the Egyptian army said on Sunday.

“The air forces targeted 66 hideouts and centres used by terrorists,” Xinhua quoted a statement as saying, adding that 11 vehicles and 31 motorbike as well as three explosive warehouses were destroyed during the continuous raids.

Egypt launched a nationwide counterterrorism operation on Friday to eliminate terrorism. A military spokesman said that the operation would cover large parts of Sinai, Nile Delta and the Western Desert and borders with Libya.

The operation was launched as part of the efforts to reach the three-month deadline set by President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi to eliminate terrorism after the mosque attack that killed 310 people in the northern Sinai city of Arish in November, 2017.

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Egypt’s army has been struggling to uproot the strongholds of terrorists, now belonging to the Islamic State branch in Sinai, since the ouster of the Islamist leader Mohamed Morsi, in response to mass protests against his rule in 2013.

–IANS

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