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The New Arab

Military shelling kills two children in Egypt's Sinai

Sinai residents accuse security forces of killing hundreds of innocent civilians [Getty]

Date of publication: 8 July, 2016

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Two children have been killed and three others injured in Egypt's restive North Sinai, when a military shell hit their family home during the Eid holiday.

Two children have been killed and three others injured in Egypt's restive North Sinai, when a military shell hit their family home during the Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of the holy Muslim fasting month of Ramadan.

The shell hit a house in the village of Jouz Ghanem outside the provincial capital al-Arish on Friday, killing a teenager and his younger sister.

"A military tank fired an artillery shell and hit a home on Friday afternoon. The explosion killed two people and wounded three other members of a family that were celebrating Eid together," a local source told The New Arab.

Medics said that 6-year-old Fatma Mutlaq and her 16-year-old brother Reda were killed in the blast, adding that their 6-year-old sister was wounded by shrapnel.

They said the wounded had been rushed to hospital in Rafah.

An affiliate of the Islamic State group [IS] has been waging an insurgency that has killed hundreds of police officers and soldiers in restive Sinai.

     
     

It has kept up the attacks, mostly roadside bombings and ambushes, despite a massive military campaign to uproot IS from the eastern peninsula bordering Israel and the Palestinian Gaza Strip.

Civilians have increasingly been caught in the crossfire between security services and Islamic militants.

The government has bulldozed thousands of homes on the Rafah border to make way for a "buffer zone" with Gaza, an act widely criticised by many human rights groups.

Heavy-handedness

Sinai residents accuse security forces of killing innocent civilians in their counter-terrorism operations.

The government has bulldozed thousands of homes on the Rafah border to make way for a "buffer zone" with Gaza, an act widely criticised by many human rights groups.

Last week, a Coptic priest was shot dead in an attack claimed by IS in Sinai, as the country marked the third anniversary of the military coup that ousted Islamist president Mohammad Morsi.

IS has claimed to have blown up a passenger jet over Sinai in October last year with 224 people on board.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi warned last week that that "black terrorism" was trying to obstruct the "hopes and aspirations of the people".

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