CAIRO – Egypt’s military says its forces have killed a man they identified as the leader of the Islamic State group in the restive Sinai Peninsula.
Col. Tamer el-Rifai, a military spokesman, says in a Wednesday statement that Naser Abou Zaqoul has been killed in a shootout with troops in central Sinai. He did not elaborate.
The news came just days after the military said eight soldiers were killed and 15 wounded when militants wearing explosive belts blew themselves up as they tried to infiltrate a military base in central Sinai.
Egypt has been struggling to contain a long-running insurgency in Sinai. It launched a massive operation in February against militants in Sinai as well as parts of Egypt’s Nile Delta and the Western Desert, along the porous border with Libya.