Egyptian Forces, Militants Clash in Sinai

Security forces clashed with Islamic militants in the mountains of Sinai (search) on Tuesday, killing a suspect in last year's deadly bombings of beach resorts on the peninsula, the government said.

The gunbattle erupted as police were chasing militants believed involved in the October bombings at the Sinai resorts of Taba and Ras Shitan (search), which killed 34 people, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.

The ministry identified the suspect killed Tuesday as Mohammed Abdel Rahman Badawi, saying he took part in the Sinai bombings and was found armed with an automatic rifle and a handgun.

Witnesses said two people were killed in the shootout — a policeman and a militant — outside Ras el-Sudr, a Red Sea town 25 miles south of Suez. But the ministry said only that a policeman was wounded.

Interior Minister Habib el-Adly said last month that police were closing in on two key suspects in the Sinai bombings. One of the blasts destroyed a wing of the Taba Hilton Hotel (search).