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Egyptian security forces kill 12 by mistake

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Society
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Ministry officials say a joint force of the police and military accidentally shot at 4 vehicles carrying a Mexican tourist group while chasing terrorist elements

Egypt's military and police have killed 12 Mexicans and Egyptians by mistake during an anti-terrorism operation in the western desert.

The interior ministry says the incident occurred in an off-limits area on Sunday.

Ministry officials say a joint force of the police and military accidentally shot at 4 vehicles carrying a Mexican tourist group while chasing terrorist elements.

The officials say 10 others sustained injuries and have been taken to hospitals.

The ministry has set up a taskforce to investigate how the vehicles entered the area and what caused the security forces to shoot at them.

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto condemned the attack and called for a thorough investigation.

Egypt's military and police have been conducting operations against militants claiming to be affiliated with the Islamic State group. The militants have bases on the Sinai Peninsula and in the desert near the border with Libya.