November 13, 2014 / 11:09 AM / in 3 years

Five Egyptian security personnel killed in Sinai gun attacks

CAIRO (Reuters) - Unidentified gunmen killed at least five Egyptian soldiers and policemen on Thursday in two separate gun attacks in northern Sinai, an area under emergency rule due to militant violence, security and medical sources said.

Three soldiers on leave were traveling in a taxi near Sheikh Zuweid when they were ambushed and shot dead, the sources said. In a separate incident in Rafah, bordering the Gaza Strip, gunmen stopped a car carrying two police conscripts and killed them.

Militants have killed hundreds of soldiers and police, mostly in Sinai since the army toppled President Mohamed Mursi in July 2013 after protests against his rule. The army declared a three-month state of emergency in the area last month after 33 security personnel were killed in two attacks.

Egypt’s most active militant group, Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, this week swore allegiance to Islamic State, the al Qaeda offshoot which has seized territory in Syria and Iraq.

Reporting by Yusri Mohamed; Editing by Angus MacSwan

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