UPDATE: No Official Death Toll -Security Sources

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There had been no official death toll because ambulances cannot reach the injured and killed for fear of finding explosive devices planted in the road, security sources and eye witnesses told Al-Ahram Aracic news website.

There is currently a power cut in Sheikh Zuweid and local residents are staying in their houses due to the on-going fighting between militants and security forces, according to eye witnesses.

In Al-Arish, a source told Ahram Online that things are calmer, but roads and highways are blocked by security forces.

According to AP, Islamic militants on Wednesday unleashed a wave of simultaneous attacks, including a suicide car bombing, on Egyptian army checkpoints in the restive north of the Sinai Peninsula, killing at least 30 soldiers, security and military officials said.

The attacks took place just south of the town of Sheikh Zuweid and targeted at least six military checkpoints, the officials said. The militants also took soldiers captive and seized several armored vehicles, they added, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.

The northern part of Egypt’s border Sinai Peninsula has been a bastion of an Islamist insurgency that has spiked since the 2013 ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi and a crackdown on his supporters. Militants have mainly targeted police and troops in deadly attacks that killed have hundreds, including civilians, over the past two years.

On Tuesday, gunmen shot dead an Egyptian policeman outside a museum in southern Cairo and three suspected militants were killed in a car explosion in a suburb of the capital.

The attacks came a day after Egypt’s top public prosecutor was assassinated when a car bomb struck his convoy in Cairo, the highest-ranking state official to be killed since Morsi’s removal.

Source: Ahram Online & AP

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