Over 50 policemen killed in clashes with terrorists in Egypt

16 Egyptian police officers killed in shootout in Giza

However, the Ministry of Interior today said that 16 policemen, including 11 officers, were killed in the clashes.

Earlier death toll said no less than 30 policemen had died but later media reports put the number to 52 on Saturday, 21 October.

The ministry also said that the terrorists used the desert area in al-Wahat as a training place and a launching point for the terror acts they carried out across the country.

However, the statement added, terrorists started firing at the security forces with heavy machine guns from all directions as they approached their hideout, causing 12 officers and four police conscripts dead, 13 injured and one missing.

The suspected militants tried to flee after the exchange of fire there, the sources said, and continued to fire at a second security unit called in for backup from atop neighboring buildings. Cairo has struggled to contain an insurgency since its military led a coup against Egypt's first democratically-elected leader.

State television said Saturday a security alert was declared in the area to hunt down militants. He also commanded the armed forces and police for saving Egypt over the past years from meeting the same fate of countries plagued with terrorism, the presidency statement said.

Terrorist attacks, mainly targeting police and military, increased after the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi in 2013 by military following massive protests against his rule. The Muslim Brotherhood has denied any involvement in violent attacks against security forces.

Hundreds of police and army personnel have been killed since then.

Egypt has been under a state of emergency since April when a twin church attack killed scores.

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