Gunmen kill 15 Egyptian soldiers in checkpoint attack

CAIRO: Gunmen firing rocket-propelled grenades attacked an Egyptian border guards checkpoint Saturday, killing 15 soldiers, officials and state media said, in one of the biggest assaults since president Mohamed Morsi´s ouster.

Militants have stepped up attacks on the security forces since Morsi was toppled in July 2013 as the army struggles to quell insurgency that has killed scores of soldiers and police, mainly in the Sinai Peninsula bordering Israel and the Palestinian Gaza Strip.

Gunmen used RPGs and heavy machineguns when they attacked the checkpoint in a desert area at El-Farafrah, 630 kilometres (390 miles) west of Cairo, security officials said.

State news agency MENA confirmed the attack, saying three assailants were also killed during the clash, the second to hit the same checkpoint in less than three months.