At Least 52 Officers and Conscripts Killed in Egypt Gun Battle

At Least 52 Officers and Conscripts Killed in Egypt Gun Battle

The interior ministry said on Saturday the shootout lasted for hours after security forces attempted to raid a hideout of terrorists, who were armed with heavy weapons.

Interior Ministry said that a number of policemen were killed and injured, and some terrorists also died in the ensuing crossfire.

More than 50 Egyptian troops and police officers were killed during a raid on a militant hideout southwest of Cairo, local media reported on Saturday, citing security sources.

The sources said authorities were following a lead to an apartment thought to house eight suspected members of Hasm, a group which has claimed several attacks around the capital targeting judges and policemen since a year ago.

In response to the latest bloodshed Egyptian security forces appeared to step up their operations in the area of the attack.

The sources said the suspected militants also used explosive devices in the attack.

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The source said the situation was made worse as the militants were more familiar with the area, while the commanding officer was unable to call for land and air reinforcements due to poor telecommunications in the desert.

Hundreds of police and army personnel have been killed since then. The Muslim Brotherhood denies this. The group has claimed attacks around Cairo targeting judges and police.

Details of Friday's deadly shootout remain unclear.

The insurgency has been concentrated in the northern Sinai Peninsula, but attacks have spread in the mainland, including the capital.

Earlier this month, Sisi extended for a second time a state of emergency, first declared after bombings claimed by IS in two churches that killed at least 45 people in April.