Cairo: Egypt on Wednesday extended by another three months the state of emergency imposed on parts of northern Sinai since October last year, as the military battles a raging Islamist insurgency in the desert region.
Over 600 security personnel and police have lost their lives in counter-insurgency operations in northern Sinai against Islamist militants, who have stepped up their attacks since mid-2013 when the then military chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi overthrew Islamist President Mohamed Mursi.
Sisi, who became president last year, today extended the state of emergency by another three months. It will be implemented in Rafah, al-Arish, Sheikh Zuweid and surrounding areas and will include night curfew from 5pm to 7am as well.
The measure was first introduced in October last year after 33 security personnel were killed in an attack claimed by Sinai Province, an affiliate of Islamic State, at a checkpoint in northern Sinai.
The military has since launched security campaigns in the area, arrested suspects and demolished houses that belong to terrorists, including those facilitating tunnels leading to the Gaza Strip.