Egypt: 16 militants killed, 66 hideouts destroyed on 3rd day of ‘Sinai 2018’
Taha Sakr Egypt Independent February 11, 2018 1:14 pm
Egypt’s Armed Forces killed 16 militants and destroyed 66 militant hideouts
on Sunday morning as part of a large-scale operation dubbed “Comprehensive
Operation Sinai 2018” that began on Friday, an official statement by the
army’s official spokesperson read.
Sunday’s statement said that forces of the Third and Second Field armies
with the support of special forces and the Thunderbolt commando force swept
North and Central Sinai and killed the militants there.
The destruction of the hideouts was carried out with the support of Egypt’s
A storage facility containing Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) and two
four-wheel vehicles used by militants were also destroyed.
Four people affiliated with the militants were arrested while they were
monitoring movements by the army forces, and 30 other suspects were detained
and are now subjected to investigations.
12 IED planted at places where the forces would pass were discovered and 11
four-wheel vehicles and 31 motorbikes were also destroyed.
The third day of the operation also resulted in the destruction of a media
center that contained a number of computers and wireless communication
devices in addition to books and other means used to spread “jihadist
ideology,” according to the army statement.
Four official statements have so far been released by the army since the
beginning of the wide-ranging operation.
A video message released on Saturday said that the Egyptian Air Forces
executed a number of airstrikes against militants’ stationing points in
North and Central Sinai.
The strikes began on Friday and went on until the early hours of Saturday
morning during which a number of weapons storages and logistic support zones
belonging to the militants were destroyed.
Dubbed “Comprehensive Operation Sinai 2018,” the operation was conducted
with the participation of various branches of the Egyptian Armed Forces,
including the Third and Second Field Armies located in the Sinai.
“The number of forces that are participating in the ‘Comprehensive Operation
Sinai 2018? reached 35,000 armymen with the support of Egypt’s Special
Forces and police. The operation aims to eliminate the presence of the
Islamic State-affiliated group Sinai Province. The wide spread of the
Egyptian Armed Forces in the Sinai will leave no presence to a single
militant,” an army source who preferred to remain anonymous told Egypt
Independent on Sunday.
Since 2014, North Sinai has seen an increase in conflict between the army
and police and Sinai Province—previously known as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis
before it announced its allegiance to the Islamic State. The group has
launched several violent attacks against army and police checkpoints in
North Sinai cities.
North Sinai-based state security has carried out large-scale security sweeps
and military operations in response.