Egyptian army detains 9 'gunmen' and seizes explosives
Published Monday 07/10/2013 (updated) 08/10/2013 10:57
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma'an) -- Senior Egyptian sources told Ma'an that the Egyptian army launched a campaign against "gunmen" in al-Dahier village south of al-Sheikh Zwaied in the Sinai peninsula on Monday.
The Egyptian army reported that it detained nine "armed elements" and to have seized about a quarter of a ton of explosives.
In the operation, the army destroyed four houses allegedly belonging to four "Takfiri" leaders, and they also destroyed three vehicles that had allegedly been used for attacks against Egyptian military targets. "Takfiri" groups in Egypt have stepped up a campaign against the Egyptian military following the coup against President Morsi in July.
In the operation, the Egyptian military seized a Russian anti-tank mine and large quantities of ammunition. They also seized mobile devices and three computers that allegedly contained plans to attack and hit Egyptian army targets.
Hundreds of people have been killed and more than 2,000 arrested across Egypt in the crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood since Aug. 14, when police forcibly dispersed two protest camps in Cairo's Rabia al-Adawiya Square. The protest camps had been set up in opposition to the July 3 coup by the Egyptian military, which overthrew democratically elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi following mass protests against his leadership.
In the months since, the Egyptian military has stepped up a campaign against militant groups operating out of the Sinai Peninsula, while armed groups loyal to Morsi have responded violently against the military crackdown. Other armed groups have taken advantage of the relatively lawless situation in the Sinai Peninsula to engage in smuggling and human trafficking.
Also on Monday, bombs targeting Egyptian security targets exploded across the Sinai Peninsula, killing at least eight. Rocket propelled grenades were also launched at a satellite station in Ma'adi, south of Cairo.
On Oct. 6, Egyptian security forces attacked anti-coup protests across the country, killing more than 50.