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10 terrorists killed in police raid in Egypt's Sinai
Last Updated: 2018-02-12 07:23 | Xinhua
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At least 10 terrorists have been killed on Sunday during a police raid in Arish city of Egypt's North Sinai province bordering Israel and the Palestinian Gaza Strip, a security source and medics told Xinhua.

They added that the dead bodies of the 10 militants have been moved to a hospital in nearby Ismailia province.

The raid comes while the country is launching a massive counterterrorism anti-terror campaign named "Comprehensive Operation Sinai 2018" that started on Friday.

Earlier on Sunday, the Egyptian army announced that it killed at least 16 militants and arrested four suspects in the restive northern part of the Sinai Peninsula since the major operation started.

North Sinai has been the center of terrorist attacks that killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers following the military removal of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 in response to mass protests.

Attacks later extended to reach several other provinces including the capital Cairo and started to target the Coptic minority via church bombings and shootings.

Terrorists in Egypt did not stop at targeting security personnel and Copts, as they stormed a mosque in Arish city last November, killing at least 310 Muslim worshippers and injuring more than 120 others, marking the deadliest terror attack and the first against a mosque in Egypt's modern history.

Most of the terror attacks were carried out by the so-called Wilayat Sinai (Sinai state or province), a Sinai-based group affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) regional terrorist group. No group has yet claimed responsibility for the mosque attack though.

Following the mosque attack, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi ordered the army to restore security and stability in North Sinai within three months.

Egyptian security forces have so far killed hundreds of terrorists and arrested thousands of suspects during the country's anti-terror war declared by Sisi, the army chief then, following Morsi's ouster in 2013.

The comprehensive anti-terror operation "Sinai 2018" comes weeks before Egypt starts its 2018 presidential elections scheduled for late March, where incumbent President Sisi is expected to make an easy win for a second term due to the lack of strong challengers in the race.

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