Two Egyptian policemen gunned down near Cairo
Isis claims responsibility for killing of two men, day after attack on Bella Vista hotel in Red Sea resort of Hurghada
A police officer and a soldier have been shot dead near Cairo a day after suspected Islamic State militants were killed while attempting to launch an assault on tourists at an Egyptian holiday resort.
The incident on Saturday took place in the Giza area, on the outskirts of the Egyptian capital, while the two men were travelling in a car. Unidentified men opened fire on them, the interior ministry said.
Isis claimed responsibility for killing the two men in a statement posted on the messaging service Telegram.
The attack occurred as the country’s tourism minister, Hisham Zazou, prepared to visit the victims of an attack at a Red Sea hotel.
Three tourists, two Austrians and a Swede, were wounded on Friday when two men armed with knives launched an assault on the Bella Vista hotel in Hurghada.
A hospital official identified them as Renata and Wilhelm Weisslein, both 72, and Sammie Olovsson, 27, and said they were all in a stable condition. Police shot dead one of the assailants and seriously wounded the other.
Zazou said their motive was unclear. “If someone wants to claim that this is part of a terrorist group, it is a bit amateurish for that,” he said. “They used only knives. If someone wants to attempt really to create a terrible incident, he would not be using a knife.”
Security sources, however, said the attackers, who arrived by sea, were also carrying a gun and a suicide belt. A Norwegian tourist staying at the Bella Vista said he heard at least 24 shots as the attackers moved around the hotel.
“I was in my room when I heard someone shouting. I went out on the balcony and could see a man wave a black flag with white writings on it. He was yelling loudly,” Jon Torp told Norway’s VG newspaper.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, which came the day after gunmen targeted a Cairo hotel where Israeli tourists were staying. No one was injured, but Is is claimed responsibility for Thursday’s incident.
The latest spate of attacks come after security in the country was called into question following the downing of a passenger jet that had taken off from an Egyptian airport. Isis militants said they had smuggled a bomb on board a Russian plane that crashed shortly after leaving Sharm el-Sheikh airport in October, killing more than 200 people on board.
The downing of the jet prompted Russia to suspend flights to and from Egypt, while Britain restricted flights there. Egyptian investigators said last month that they had found no evidence of terrorism or foul play.
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