Army raids kill 12 militants in Egypt's North Sinai

Cairo: At least 12 militants have been killed in army raids in Egypt's restive North Sinai governorate, a day after four soldiers were killed by the extremists, officials said.

The army forces are currently targeting militants' headquarters at Sheikh Zwayed city in the governorate, military spokesperson Brigadier General Mohamed Samir said in a statement yesterday.

On Thursday, a militant attack targeted army's armored vehicle, killing four soldiers and injuring three others.

Ansar Beit el-Maqdes, which changed its name to Sinai Province after it had pledged allegiance to Islamic State militant group, has claimed responsibility for the Thursday's attack in a statement posted on its Twitter account.

Egypt's North Sinai has witnessed many violent attacks by militants since the January, 2011 revolution that toppled ex-president Hosni Mubarak.

The attacks targeting police and military increased after the ouster of Islamist ex-president Mohamed Morsi in 2013 by military following massive protests against his rule.

Over 600 security personnel have been reported killed since then.

The military has launched security campaigns in the area, arrested suspects and demolished houses that belong to terrorists, including those facilitating tunnels leading to the Gaza Strip.

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