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Egypt troops kill 5 jihadists after Sinai airport strike

The military said an officer was killed and a helicopter damaged when a “projectile” struck the Sinai airport on Tuesday.

world Updated: Dec 20, 2017 20:50 IST
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse, Cairo
Egypt,Sinai,Islamic State
Military forces in North Sinai, Egypt on December 1, 2017.(Reuters)

Five jihadists were killed on Wednesday near El-Arish airport in Egypt’s restive North Sinai where a rocket strike killed two officers during a visit by the defence and interior ministers, security sources said.

The Islamic State (IS) group claimed responsibility for Tuesday’s strike on the airport, saying in a statement it had targeted visiting defence minister Sedki Sobhy and interior minister Magdy Abdel Ghaffar.

The military said after the attack that an officer was killed and a helicopter damaged when a “projectile” struck the airport while the ministers where visiting “to inspect the security forces and security situation in Sinai”.

Neither minister was harmed and the military later published footage of them returning to Cairo, but a second officer has died of his injuries, the security sources said.

They told AFP that five jihadists were killed in a shootout with security forces combing farmlands surrounding the airport a day after the strike.

IS jihadists have killed hundreds of soldiers and police in North Sinai state, and they have expanded their attacks over the past year to target Christians in the mainland.

First Published: Dec 20, 2017 20:50 IST