Egypt: 50 policemen killed during clashes with militants

by Abel Hampton October 22, 2017, 0:18
Egypt: 50 policemen killed during clashes with militants

More than 50 Egyptian troops and police officers were killed during a raid on a militant hideout southwest of Cairo, local media reported on Saturday, citing security sources.

More anti-terrorism forces have been deployed to the area in an attempt to tackle the militants.

An official statement issued on October 21 said the incident would be investigated, suggesting that the heavy death toll may have been partially caused by incompetence, intelligence failures, or lack of coordination.

There has not yet been a claim of responsibility.

According to a source close to the security services, the police convoy was hit by rocket fire. "Islamic State" (IS) militants based in the Sinai Peninsula have also increased attacks across the country recently.

The official says the exchange of gunfire took place on Friday in the al-Wahat al-Bahriya district in the Giza governorate, about 135 kilometers, or 84 miles, from the Egyptian capital.

Egypt is now battling an Islamist insurgency.

But an AFP reporter did not see the strongman leader at an open-air ceremony involving foreign dignitaries, and his office said he had cancelled his participation in a number of other engagements.

The country has been in a heightened state of turmoil and violence since the military overthrew President Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, the country's first democratically-elected president, in mid-2013 following mass protests against his rule. The Muslim Brotherhood has denied any involvement in violent attacks against security forces.

After he was deposed, extremist groups launched increasing numbers of attacks on the military and police.

Hundreds of police and army personnel have been killed since then.

Analysts say a section of the Brotherhood has encouraged armed assaults against the police.

No group made any claim or statement about Friday's operation not far from the capital. Those attacks were claimed by IS.

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