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Published: Monday July 14, 2014 MYT 7:35:03 AM
Updated: Monday July 14, 2014 MYT 7:35:03 AM

Eight killed in blasts in Egypt's Sinai region

CAIRO (Reuters) - One security officer and seven others were killed in two successive explosions around security areas in Egypt's Sinai region, near the border with Israel, the Interior Ministry and security officials said.

Egypt has been hit by an Islamist insurgency led by Sinai-based militants, who have mainly targeted security forces since last year's army ouster of elected Islamist President Mohamed Mursi. Hundreds of soldiers and police officers have been killed in those attacks.

The Interior Ministry said seven people were killed and around 25 others were injured in an explosion. Security sources said the rocket was targeting North Sinai's main security compound but instead fell in front of a nearby crowded supermarket in Sinai's northern city of Al-Arish.

A few minutes later, two rockets hit a security unit in the same city killing an officer and injuring seven others, medical sources said.

The army ousted Mursi last July after mass protests against his rule. The move was followed by a crackdown on Islamists in which hundreds of street protesters were killed and thousands of Islamist leaders and activists were jailed.

Egypt's newly elected President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the former army chief who orchestrated Mursi's overthrow, has promised to fight what he calls terrorism and restore stability to the Arab world's most populous state.

(Reporting by Mostafa Hashem and Ahmed Tolba in Cairo and Yusri Mohamed in Ismailia; Writing by Yasmine Saleh in Cairo; Editing by Sandra Maler and Eric Walsh)

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