Islamic State claims attack that killed 5 soldiers in Egypt

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CAIRO (AP) — An Islamic State affiliate in Egypt claimed responsibility Saturday for an attack that killed at least five soldiers in the troubled Sinai Peninsula.

The extremist group announced its affirmation of Wednesday’s attack in a statement published by its Aamaq news agency. The authenticity of the statement could not be verified, but it was posted on Telegram, as has been done in the past.

The attack involved an ambush by militants on a border guard checkpoint west of the Mediterranean city of Rafah, which borders the Gaza Strip.

The army said at least five soldiers, including an officer, were killed in the attack. At least seven militants were also killed, he said.

It was the second militant attack in less than a week.

last Saturday, at least 11 soldiers were killedin one of the deadliest attacks against Egyptian security forces in recent years.

The Islamic State group also claimed responsibility for that attack, which took place in the city of Qantara in Ismailia province, which stretches east from the Suez Canal.

Egypt is battling an insurgency in Sinai that intensified after the army ousted an elected but divisive Islamist president in 2013. Extremists have carried out dozens of attacks, mainly targeting security forces and Christians, but the pace has slowed in recent years.

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