An explosion hit a military armored convoy in the Sinai Peninsula Thursday, causing at least 10 casualties among soldiers who are participating in a campaign against extremists in the region, Egyptian authorities reported.
Military spokesman Tamer Refai did not specify the number of soldiers killed by the improvised explosive device. But other officials said 10 soldiers died, including an officer, and three others suffered shrapnel wounds.
The attack near the small Sinai town of Bir al-Abed occurred during Ramadan, after sundown when the faithful break their daily fast. President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi gave his condolences in a statement posted on Facebook, praising the fallen soldiers as “heroes” and “martyrs.” There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.
For years, Egypt has been fighting the Sinai affiliate of ISIS in the border region. The campaign escalated in 2013.
Most extremist attacks have occurred in northern Sinai, but militants have also struck at police officers, troops and other high-profile targets in the mainland.
On April 14, an Egyptian police officer and seven militants were killed in a firefight in the capital of Cairo after the ministry of interior received information about potential Easter attacks against Coptic Christians, the interior ministry said. Three other policemen had also been wounded.