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Gunmen kill 21 Egyptian soldiers in checkpoint attack

An Egyptian soldier stands guard along the Rafah border with Israel on July 19, 2014Egypt’s military said militants firing machineguns and rocket-propelled grenades attacked a border checkpoint Saturday, killing 21 soldiers in one of the biggest assaults on security forces in years. The attack in a desert area 630 kilometres (390 miles) west of Cairo also left four soldiers wounded, the military said in a statement, blaming “terrorists”. It said a rocket propelled grenade fired by the militants set off an explosion in an ammunition depot at the El-Farafrah post, killing the soldiers. Militants have stepped up attacks on the security forces since Islamist president Mohamed Morsi was toppled in July 2013 as the army struggles to quell an Islamist insurgency that has killed scores of soldiers and police, mainly in the Sinai Peninsula bordering Israel and the Palestinian Gaza Strip.

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