By Shola Lawanson
Egyptian police killed six suspected Islamist militants in a shootout early on Saturday in the country’s south, the interior ministry said.
The clashes broke out during a police raid on a militant hideout in a mountainous area on the edge of the southern province of Sohag, some 460 kilometres (285 miles) south of Cairo, the ministry said in a statement.
Police seized weapons and ammunition, it added.
The operation is part of “the interior ministry’s efforts to confront terrorist organisations aiming to undermine security and stability” in Egypt, it said.
Egypt has been battling an Islamist insurgency following the 2013 ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, who was forced out by the military in the face of mass protests against his rule.
Attacks have largely been concentrated in the turbulent northern Sinai region, but have also taken place elsewhere across the country.
Egypt launched in February a wide-scale operation centred on North Sinai to wipe out jihadists, including members of the Islamic State group, spearheading the insurgency there.