4 Civilians Killed in Two Attacks in North Sinai

Four civilians were killed in two separate incidents in North Sinai on Saturday, sources and eyewitnesses said, coming at a turbulent time for the peninsula which has witnessed an escalation of militancy last week.

A child was killed and four were injured, including three children when an improvised explosive device detonated near a checkpoint located in Rafah, security sources said.

In the earlier incident, three civilians were killed and two were seriously injured when a rocket hit a house near North Sinai’s Sheikh Zuweid city.

Medical sources said ambulances have transported all five casualties, adding that they include children.

Eyewitnesses told Aswat Masriya that the five belonged to one family.

The Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis militant group has recently intensified attacks in North Sinai.

On Wednesday, Ansar conducted a string of attacks on a number of security checkpoints and a police station in the Sinai town of Sheikh Zuweid, in a failed attempt to take over the town.

The attacks claimed the lives of 17 army personnel and injured 13, according to military figures. The military said it killed no less than 100 suspected militants on that day.

The army announced that over the past three days it killed 205 militants in North Sinai.

On Friday, Ansar claimed responsibility for for three rockets it said it fired into Israel, earlier that day.

The group changed its name to Sinai Province last November after pledging allegiance to Islamic State fighters in Iraq and Syria.