Egyptian police on Monday killed three terrorists who were allegedly involved in the execution of a Coptic Christian and two tribesmen in Egypt’s Sinai, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.
After receiving a tip-off, the national security sector struck a hideout of some terrorist elements in al-Abtal area in North Sinai.
“The suspected elements were planning to carry out terrorist operations against some Coptic people, their properties, headquarters of the police and armed forces,” the statement said.
Three machine guns, one bomb, and an explosive were seized in their possession, it added.
An Islamic State (IS)-affiliated group in Sinai claimed on Sunday in a 13-minute video that it executed a Coptic Christian and two tribesmen in North Sinai.
The Coptic Christians make up more than 10 per cent of Egypt’s 100-million population.
The Coptic Church named the 62-year-old Copt from Bir al-Abd in North Sinai as Nabil Habashi.
The forces have been combing the surrounding areas to arrest two other top terrorists who took part in the killing of Habashi on Sunday.
Anti-security forces attacks have been escalated in North Sinai since 2013 when the army overthrew late Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in response to mass protest against his rule.
Most attacks have been centered in North Sinai while some others were expanded in the capital Cairo and other cities targeting churches, civilians, and police checkpoints.
An IS-affiliated group in Sinai claimed responsibility for most of the attacks that left hundreds of security men killed.
In response, Egypt has launched 2018 a nationwide operation against militants focused on North Sinai, killing at least 1,000. (Xinhua/NAN)
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