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Dec 22, 11:41 AM EST

Gunmen shoot, seriously wound Egypt military officer

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CAIRO (AP) -- Gunmen on a motorcycle shot an Egyptian military officer, seriously wounding him as he walked to work in a Cairo neighborhood, the military said Monday.

Military spokesman Mohammed Samir said on his official Facebook page that "terrorist elements" shot the non-commissioned officer in east Cairo's el-Marg neighborhood. He said the officer had multiple wounds in different parts of his body and was transferred to a military hospital for treatment.

A security official who is familiar with the incident report said four masked gunmen, riding a motorcycle and heavily armed, sprayed the 30-year old officer with bullets as he walked in a busy street, then fled. The official said witnesses reported the attack to the police. He was speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss military affairs.

Military and police have come under escalating attacks as authorities battle a low-level insurgency in the Sinai Peninsula which has intensified following the ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi. Most of the attacks have been focused on northern Sinai. But the militants have also expanded their operations to the capital and other cities, including targeting the interior minister in a failed assassination attempt. There are rarely reports of attacks on military troops in the capital.

Also, the Interior Ministry said in a statement Monday that its forces have raided a farm in the Delta province of al-Sharqiya, north of Cairo, where suspected members of a Sinai-based group allied with the Islamic State were hiding, killing five militants in a shootout.

The statement said some of those killed in the Sunday raid were wanted members of the group, known as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, or Champions of Jerusalem. One security officer was wounded in the shootout and a weapons cache was seized, including explosive belts for suicide attacks, and a car laden with explosives, the statement said.

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