Four suspected jihadists killed by Egyptian security forces: Interior ministry

Egypt's Interior ministry said four suspected jihadists, accused of involvement in a fatal attack on a police checkpoint on Wednesday, were killed in a raid by security forces in El-Arish, North Sinai.

Security forces also recovered three rifles and an explosive vest following the raid on a building which was used as a hideout.

According to the ministry, 26 suspected terrorists have been killed since an operation began following Wednesday's attack which left eight police officers dead.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack.

North Sinai province, the northern part of the peninsula, has been the center of a wave of terrorist attacks that killed hundreds of policemen, soldiers and civilians over the past few years, with a Sinai-based group affiliated with the regional Islamic State claiming responsibility for most of them.

Government figures say about 650 militants and 50 soldiers have been killed since the Egyptian army began a campaign against the insurgents in February 2018.

Terrorism rose in Egypt following the popularly-backed military ouster of former Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 in response to mass protests against his one-year controversial rule and his currently outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.