Soldiers killed, 72 suspects arrested in Egypt’s Sinai

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Militants killed an Egyptian soldier in Sinai on Wednesday, while security forces made 72 arrests in a sweep of the peninsula to hunt suspects wanted for a bomb attack, officials said.

The soldier was killed in the Tamada area of central Sinai, a medic and a security official said, adding he was shot in the head.

Security forces, meanwhile, rounded up 72 suspects wanted for Tuesday's bomb attack targeting a security convoy that killed two people, including a civilian, and wounded five.

They were arrested in the town of Rafah, on the Gaza border.

The convoy was targeted as it travelled from Rafah towards the North Sinai provincial capital el-Arish.

Egypt's army has poured troops and armor into the Sinai to crush militant activity, which has surged since Islamist president Mohammed Mursi was overthrown in a July 3 military coup.

A subsequent crackdown on Islamists has resulted in more than 1,000 people being killed and more than 2,000 arrested nationwide.

Dozens of soldiers and policemen have also been killed in near daily attacks in the Sinai.