Gunbattles, airstrikes in Sinai as Egyptian forces hit militants

Egyptian army helicopters during a major assault against militants. Airstrikes had hit at least 60 militant targets in the Sinai peninsula. (Ministry of Defense via Reuters)
Updated 12 February 2018
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Gunbattles, airstrikes in Sinai as Egyptian forces hit militants

CAIRO: Egyptian security forces killed 12 militants in gunbattles and arrested 92 suspects, while airstrikes destroyed dozens of militant targets in Sinai, the army said in a statement carried on state television on Monday.
Based on army statements, around 28 militants have been killed since Friday in the latest offensive to crush insurgents blamed for a string of attacks. The latest statement said airstrikes had hit at least 60 militant targets.
President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, who is seeking re-election in March, ordered the armed forces in November to defeat militants within three months after an attack on a mosque killed more than 300 people, the deadliest such incident in the Arab world’s most populous country.
The insurgency poses the greatest challenge to the government in a country that is both the most populous in the Arab World and a main regional ally of the US.
Sisi was elected for his first term in 2014 after the army ousted President Mohamed Morsi following mass protests against his rule.


Israeli air strike kills Hamas man in Gaza

Updated 19 July 2018
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Israeli air strike kills Hamas man in Gaza

GAZA: An Israeli air strike in the Gaza Strip killed a member of the militant Hamas group on Thursday and wounded three others, Hamas sources and medical officials said.
The Israeli military confirmed it had carried out an air strike targeting Hamas militants who were about to launch balloons rigged with flammable material over the border into Israel.
Hamas sources said the casualties were security men working at an observation post near Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip.
Fires caused by incendiary helium balloons and kites launched by Palestinians in Gaza have ravaged tracts of farmland in Israel in recent months. Israel has vowed to stop the attacks, even at the risk of wider conflict.
Weekly clashes at the Israel-Gaza border have kept tensions at a high for months. More than 130 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces during protests at the frontier held every week since March.
Israel says Hamas has been orchestrating the demonstrations, dubbed The Great March of Return, to provide cover for militants' cross-border attacks. Hamas denies this.
Cross-border violence surged on Saturday when Palestinian militants fired more than 100 rockets into Israel and the Israeli military carried out dozens of air strikes in the Hamas-ruled enclave.