Cairo: Thirteen policemen were killed on Saturday evening when suspected militants fired a mortar shell on a security checkpoint in the Sinai Peninsula, the Interior Ministry said.

The ministry added in a statement that the attack occurred in Al Arish, the main city of North Sinai.

The dead included two officers and 11 police conscripts.

“The Interior Ministry are mourning with profound sadness the brave martyrs of the police,” it said in a statement without giving further details.

Egypt has seen a spate of deadly attacks mainly against security troops since the army’s 2013 overthrow of Islamist president Mohammad Mursi.

Most of the attacks occurred in North Sinai and were claimed by a radical group linked to the terrorist Daesh.