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Minister survives bomb

Mohamed Ibrahim

Mohamed Ibrahim

CAIRO — The Egyptian interior minister survived an assassination attempt unhurt today when a remote-controlled bomb blew up as his convoy drove through Cairo’s Nasr City district, security officials said.

Security officials said at least two people had been killed and at least 10 wounded, but gave no further details.

The minister, Mohamed Ibrahim, was among those who oversaw a violent crackdown on supporters of Mohamed Mursi, the Islamist president ousted two months ago by the army following mass protests against his rule.

Asked by reporters whether the attack marked the start of “a new wave of terrorism”, Ibrahim said: “What happened today is not the end but the beginning.”

Ibrahim said this week that he had been informed of plans to kill him, and that “foreign elements” were involved. General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, head of the armed forces, had supplied him with an armoured car identical to the one he uses, he said.

There were conflicting reports about the nature of the attack. Security sources said three bombs planted inside a parked motorcycle had detonated as Ibrahim’s convoy passed by. State TV reported a bomb had been thrown from a roof.

Ibrahim said the “despicable attempt” on his life had destroyed four of his bodyguards’ vehicles. He said one police officer was in critical condition, and that another officer and a small child had lost their legs.

“Many of my guards were injured,” he said, adding that investigations had shown the blast had been detonated remotely. (Reuters)

Armed security forces quickly sealed off the area, where blood and pieces of flesh were scattered on the ground. A number of cars were damaged and the windows of adjacent buildings smashed.

“People have died, can’t you see?” a policeman, who declined to give his name or further details, told a Reuters reporter at the scene.

“I was standing by a kiosk when police officers came and told me to make way as the minister’s convoy passed. I moved a few inches, then I heard a huge explosion sound,” said local resident Mohamed Raafat

“I looked behind and I saw remains of dead bodies and was told that a car that was parking had exploded near the convoy.” (Reuters)

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