Cairo officials have identified seven terrorists suspected of involvement in an August 5 attack which killed 16 Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai Peninsula, according to Israel Radio.
The report quoted Egyptian Interior Minister Ahmed Gamal El-Din as telling government paper Al-Akhbar that of the seven suspects, one was an Egyptian citizen who belonged to a sleeper cell of the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization.
The Egyptian interior minister reportedly did not reveal the nationality of the other six suspects.
On Saturday, Egypt said it had arrested a high-level Islamist militant convicted of killing troops in the Sinai Peninsula, vowing to keep up military operations to “cleanse” the volatile desert region.
Officials said the military would soon issue a detailed report on its operations in the Sinai, now in their fourth week, which it started after a brazen attack by extremists on a police outpost near the borders with Israel and Gaza.
The announcements seemed intended to offset reports that Egypt’s Islamist president was using former jihadists to mediate with radical Islamists in Sinai, trying to ensure a halt in militant attacks in return for stopping the military offensive in the lawless peninsula.