Egypt police bust 12 suspected militants over terror plots

Source: Xinhua| 2017-10-25 01:31:09|Editor: yan
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CAIRO, Oct. 24 (Xinhua) -- The Egyptian security forces arrested on Tuesday 12 suspected militants in Fayoum province southern Cairo over plotting terror operations in support of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, said a police statement.

According to the statement, the dozen belong to "Hasm Vanguards," a cell of Hasm militant group which emerged late 2016 and is seen by the police as the Brotherhood's armed wing. Hasm has claimed responsibility for a number of terrorist attacks that killed several policemen in Egypt.

"Leaders of the terrorist group have recently assigned their members in Fayoum province who belong to the newly created 'Hasm Vanguards' militant group to intensify their aggressive activities in order to destabilize the country," it explained.

The police also seized 13 guns in their possession including nine machine guns, a Heckler gun and three cartouche guns, and defused two improvised explosive devices.

The raid comes a few of days after 16 Egyptian policemen were killed, 13 wounded and one missing in confrontations with militants last Friday in a desert area on the outskirts of Giza, which also left 15 militants either dead or injured.

Egypt has been fighting against a wave of terrorism that killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers since the military toppled Morsi in July 2013 in response to mass protests against his one-year rule and his currently blacklisted Brotherhood group.

Terror attacks have been centered in North Sinai before spreading nationwide and targeting the Coptic minority as well, with most of them claimed by a Sinai-based group loyal to the regional Islamic State (IS) militant group.

The Egyptian military and police have killed hundreds of militants and arrested a similar number of suspects as part of the country's anti-terror war declared by President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, the army chief then, following Morsi's removal.