The weapons of Spanish military personnel are laid on the street before a military parade during the national holiday known as "Dia de la Hispanidad" or Hispanic Day, in Madrid, Spain, Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017. King Felipe VI is to preside over the annual colorful parade Thursday as Spain awaits a response to a government request to Catalonia to clarify by Monday if it has already declared independence, in which case Spain warns it may begin taking control of the region. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)

Egypt's military says it has destroyed eight vehicles loaded with weapons, ammunition and explosives, and killed militants in the western desert, after they crossed borders with neighboring Libya.

The air attack comes a few days after authorities officially announced that at least 16 policemen were killed in a brazen ambush by militants in the al-Wahat al-Bahriya area, about 135 kilometers (84 miles) southwest of Cairo.

Military spokesman Col. Tamer el-Rifai said in a statement Monday that airstrikes destroyed eight vehicles and killed suspected militants, without elaborating.

Friday's attack took place near Egypt's vast western desert, where a previous series of attacks were blamed on Islamic militants pouring in from Libya.

Egypt has long contended that weapons smuggled across the porous desert border with Libya have reached militants operating on its soil.

-AP