Militants killed and wounded seven Egyptian soldiers in restive North Sinai on Sunday, Egypt’s military said.

The army said it “foiled” an attack on security facilities, “killing 10 terrorists and destroying a four-wheel-drive used by the terrorist elements.”

The casualties were of various ranks including two officers, according to the brief statement posted to the military’s Facebook page on Sunday.

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Egypt has struggled to contain an insurgency in North Sinai that escalated after the military’s 2013 ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi following mass protests.

In February 2018, Egyptian security forces launched a nationwide, large-scale operation against militants, mainly focused on North Sinai.

Earlier this month, the Islamic State group claimed it blew up a gas pipeline in Sinai connecting Egypt to Israel. Security sources said the pipeline hit was a domestic one.

More than 840 suspected militants have been killed in the region since February 2018, according to army figures. Some 67 security personnel have also been killed.

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