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Egyptian security forces foil attack on police in Sinai

Egyptian security forces foiled an attack targeting police personnel in Sinai on Friday, neutralizing three militants in the operation.

The militants ambushed security forces in Oyoun Mousa, southern Sinai on Friday morning but security forces managed to foil the attack.

Forces have also neutralized 11 militants in the northern Sinai Peninsula, after several attacks in the last two days have left eight policemen and three civilians dead in the restive area.

An Interior Ministry statement Thursday said security forces exchanged fire with the militants, but no casualties were reported among the police as they stormed the insurgent hideout in the Mediterranean coastal city of el-Arish.

The ministry said it found weapons, two explosive devices and two explosive belts.

Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi announced 2018 a large counter-terrorism campaign by the Armed Forces and the Interior Ministry under the code name ‘Comprehensive Operation – Sinai 2018,’ in northern and central Sinai and parts of the Nle Delta.

The campaign mainly targets Islamist insurgents, as well as "other criminal activity that affects national security and stability", according to the Armed Forces press statement that announced the start of the campaign.

Following the Al-Rawda mosque attack of late November 2017, the deadliest of its kind in Egypt's modern history, President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi gave the country's main security institutions a three-month deadline to secure the Sinai, a region that has witnessed an insurgency since the start of the Egyptian revolution of 2011.