BBC

Military helicopters have fired missiles on suspected Islamist militants in Touma village in the Sinai peninsula, Egyptian security officials say.

Twenty people are reported to have been killed.

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The strikes came after security checkpoints were allegedly attacked by gunmen in the town of al-Arish, leaving a number of people injured.

On Sunday, militants killed 16 Egyptian border guards in the area.

After that attack, Israeli forces said they killed some of the militants who broke through into Israel.

Patrols have been stepped up in Northern Sinai, and Egypt’s Rafah border crossing to Gaza has been indefinitely closed as security forces hunt the remaining attackers. Egypt is also reported to have begun sealing off the illicit smuggling tunnels into Gaza.

Operations ‘ongoing’

This is the first time Egypt has fired missiles in Sinai since the 1973 war with Israel, when it attempted to recapture the Sinai peninsula, security officials told Associated Press.

A Sinai army commander told Reuters news agency the army had received information that there were many militants in Touma. Read more…