Egyptian Army Kill 22 Suspected Militants outside Mosque in North Sinai

Security forces killed 22 suspected militants in North Sinai on Monday, security sources said, adding that those killed planned to target security forces.

Sixteen people gathered outside a mosque in Sheikh Zuweid, security sources told the state news agency MENA. Forces shot and shelled them as they “planned to attack some security checkpoints and headquarters.” They all instantly died.

Egyptian soldiers keep guard during a military operation in the Egyptian city of Rafah, near the border with southern Gaza Strip

Security forces also shelled a car carrying four “extremists” as they made their way to the Karam al-Qawadis checkpoint in Sheikh Zuweid, the sources told MENA. All four passengers were killed in the attack.

Two more suspected militants were shelled and killed as they drove to another Sheikh Zuweid checkpoint, riding motorcycles, the sources said.

Bombings of two houses in North Sinai’s al-Arish city left 8 injured earlier on Monday, including civilians. A dozen suspected militants were also killed in security forces’ operations, a source said.

Militancy inside Egypt has seen a significant rise since the military ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Mursi in July 2013, which was prompted by mass protests against his rule. Most attacks occur in North Sinai, targeting security forces. The attacks have left hundreds of security personnel killed.

The armed forces has launched an intensified crackdown in the Sinai Peninsula in response to the militancy.

The military spokesman had earlier said that a total of 141 suspected militants have been killed in North Sinai in May.