Cairo: At least 14 people, including 11 security personnel, were killed and about 50 others injured today in two separate attacks, claimed by an Islamic State affiliate, as militants targeted an army vehicle and a suicide bombing hit a police station in Egypt's restive North Sinai. A roadside blast targeted an armoured vehicle in Sheikh Zawayed area that is a stronghold of Ansar Beit al-Maqdis militant group, killing six army personnel, including an officer, and injuring two others.
Hours after the attack on the army vehicle, a suicide car bombing targeted a police station in North Sinai's provincial capital of Al-Arish.
The security forces opened fire on the car, which led to its explosion, killing eight people, including five policemen. Forty five others, including conscripts and civilians, were injured.
The facade of the police station was damaged and several nearby buildings also suffered minor damages. Sinai-based Ansar Beit al-Maqdis which changed its name to Sinai Province after it pledged allegiance to Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility for the two attacks. Sinai region 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. Over 500 security personnel have been reported killed since then.
The military has launched frequent security campaigns in the area, arrested suspects and demolished houses that belong to terrorists, including those facilitating tunnels leading to the Gaza Strip.