DAMASCUS, SYRIA (5:00 P.M.) – ISIS is making its presence felt on the embattled Sinai Peninsula after a mixture of pragmatic alliances with desert tribes and favorable terrain have allowed the jihadist group to become more powerful than ever in Egypt.

On Tuesday, Islamic State forces attacked a handful of government checkpoints south of Sheikh Zuweid town in the northern part of Sinai province, bordering the Gaza Strip.

Spearheaded by a suicide bomber, Islamic State units seemingly overwhelmed the Egyptian garrison, causing them to flee in disarray, driving off in armored vehicles that were supposed to man the checkpoints.

Several Egyptian government soldiers were killed in the surprise attack, Amaq Agency stated.

ISIS is active mostly in the northern fringes of Sinai province and has even set up checkpoints in the provincial capital, a northern port city called Arish.

Assassinations are also widespread in Arish while ISIS frequently raids army positions and rival tribes, capturing their weaponry and military vehicles across the vast Sinai desert.

Egypt is currently in a state of emergency due to the ongoing ISIS insurgency.

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Student currently living in Denmark. Special focus on news from Syria, MENA map-making and strategical military analysis.

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