In addition to killing alleged IS members, Egypt police also killed two men suspected of belonging to the new Hasam terror group. Cairo has been struggling against multiple insurgencies that target state officials.
The Interior Ministry in Cairo announced on Saturday that Egyptian security forces had shot dead 14 suspected so-called "Islamic State" (IS) militants, the majority of whom were fugitives connected to the previous day's bomb attack in Northern Sinai. Five of the militants shot by police have been identified as wanting to join IS, the ministry reported in a statement.
At least two policemen were killed and nine wounded when their armoured vehicle was hit by an explosion in the Sinai on Saturday, Egypt's state news agency MENA said.
According to the statement, the militants fired on police as they neared a desert camp close to the city of Ismailia, north of the Suez Canal. The police then returned fire. Militants used the camp to "subject (recruits) to military training programs on the use of various types of firearms and manufacture explosive devices," according to the ministry.
In a separate encounter on Saturday, police shot and killed two suspected terrorists in the city of Gaza, the ministry said. The men were inside an apartment and fired on the officers who were approaching the building to arrest them.
The ministry said the two men were members of a new militant group called Hasam, which has emerged recently and taken responsibility for several attacks targetting police and judges around Cairo over the past year. Reuters reported that Hasam had claimed responsibility for the killing of a homeland security officer on Friday in the north of Cairo.
Egypt's fight against militants
Fighters with the groups are active in Cairo and other cities where they have targeted security forces,
judges and pro-government figures.
IS has also intensified attacks on security forces and Coptic Christian civilians in the mainland in recent months, killing about a hundred Copts since December.
cmb/jm (Reuters, AFP, dpa)