Egyptian security authorities said Monday that they succeeded in foiling terrorist schemes aimed at carrying out a series of hostilities against vital targets and churches, announcing the death of 11 "terrorist elements" during security raids in Ismailia, east of Cairo.
Egypt has been witnessing sporadic terrorist acts, especially in northern Sinai, that have increased over the last four years after the isolation of former President Mohamed Morsi in 2013, who belongs to the "banned" Muslim Brotherhood.
On Friday, Bir al-Abed village north Sinai also witnessed the worst terrorist attack at a mosque as gunmen killed more than 300 worshipers. No organization has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.
A statement issued by Egypt’s Ministry of Interior on Monday said that police were still identifying the suspected militants killed in the raid in Ismailia province after they opened fire on security forces approaching the hideout.
The raid on the hideout was part of a security campaign in the province of Ismailia around the Suez Canal, separating the Sinai Peninsula from the rest of the country, and in the Nile Delta province of Sharqiya.
Police were pursuing leaders of "terrorist groups in North Sinai that aimed to carry out a series of hostile operations targeting important and vital buildings and churches," the statement said.
Security forces were able to identify "a group of these elements and the hideouts they were using to hide, train, and store means of logistic support ahead of smuggling them to terrorist groups in North Sinai.”
The statement said police also arrested six suspected militants and three people thought to have smuggled communications equipment to them. It said weapons, ammunition and communication devices were recovered.
On the other hand, forces of the Third Field Army killed three terrorists and arrested five others in Central Sinai, said the military spokesman on Tuesday.
Colonel Tamer Rifai added in a released statement that a small truck loaded with a large quantity of explosive materials was seized.
Eight hotbeds and 4X4 vehicle along with three motorcycles were also destroyed by the forces, he pointed out. The army forces will maintain their efforts for uprooting terrorist and criminal elements from Sinai, Rifai stressed.