Islamic State-affiliate Province of Sinai has claimed responsibility for the Thursday assassination of four Egyptian soldiers south of Arish in North Sinai. The Egyptian Armed Forces is continuing its operations to track down the militant group in central Sinai.
The militant group also claimed responsibility for planting two improvised explosive devices (IEDs), that detonated, causing damage to military vehicles in east Arish.
Armed Forces personnel found and destroyed two other IEDs targeting military vehicles traveling on one of their North Sinai routes, according to an official statement also issued on Thursday.
Another soldier was killed at a security checkpoint on the road from Arish to Sheikh Zuwayed, Al-Hayat newspaper reported on Friday. The article writes that an 80-year-old woman was also injured in Arish after being shot at by an unknown source as she walked alongside a school on Assiut street.
The Egyptian Armed Forces and police have launched military campaigns in North Sinai following the ouster of former islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013, in an attempt to counter the increasing militant attacks in the region. Unlike North Sinai, militant attacks only began to escalate in central Sinai in 2016 amid security raids on Hassana, Nekhel and most recently Gabal al-Halal.
The escalating armed conflict has taken a toll on people’s livelihood in the cities of Sheikh Zuwayed and Rafah where power outages, and the suspension of water lasted more than 11 days at the end of last March. Dozens of coptic families also fled their homes in North Sinai in February following a spate of targeted attacks carried out by militant groups.