Egypt launches air strikes in Sinai offensive

A witness says the column of tanks, trucks carrying infantry, rocket launchers and other military vehicles on the road Saturday appears to be one of the largest units deployed to the area in Sinai in recent years. (File photo: AFP)

Egyptian military helicopters carried out several air strikes in the country’s Sinai peninsula on Saturday as armored vehicles encircled supposed militant hideouts.

The airstrikes took place south of Sheikh Zuwayid, a town and also near the area bordering the Gaza Strip, according to officials quoted by AFP.

A “number” of people were killed in operation in which six helicopters were involved, according to the official news agency MENA.

The claims could not be verified as authorizes have restricted access to northern Sinai.

The offensive follows a failed car bomb attack last week on the Interior Minister’s convoy in Cairo.

Egypt’s army has faced continuing insurgency in the thinly populated north since it overthrew Islamist President Mohammad Mursi early in July.

Several dozen soldiers and policeman have been killed in the violence, including 25 personnel executed after their bus came under attack.

(with Associated Press and AFP)

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:40 - GMT 06:40