An Egyptian army soldier was killed and three others injured on Sunday when masked gunmen attacked an army vehicle in North Sinai, state-run Al Ahram newspaper reported on its website. The militants intercepted a bus carrying off-duty central security forces soldiers, and showered it with bullets at the Karbouta checkpoint near Arish city in North Sinai, Ahram quoted an official army source as saying. Since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi by the army last July, militants took from Sinai Peninsula a stronghold for attacking security men and police facilities. The army since then has launched a large-scale operation to uproot the criminal hideouts in the restive Sinai. The al-Qaida- inspired Ansar Beit al-Maqdis group claimed responsibility for most of the attacks.