19 October 2013

Egyptian Intelligence Center in Suez City Ismailia Attacked

A car bomb has exploded near an Egyptian army intelligence building in the Suez Canal city of Ismailia, wounding at least six soldiers. No group has claimed responsibility for the incident.

The force of the blast caused part of the military intelligence building's outer wall to collapse about 120 kilometers (70 miles) northeast of the capital, Cairo. As heavy smoke rose from a building after the explosion, security personnel searching the area found another car bomb, which had not gone off, state media reported.

"This is the latest in a series of cowardly terrorist attacks by extremist elements against the people of Egypt and army installations," military spokesman Colonel Ahmed Ali said in a statement.

The uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East have done more than topple dictatorships; the unrest has also altered migration patterns. And the journey to Europe has become more precarious.

An attempt to assassinate the interior minister last month raised fears of a revenge campaign over the July 3 military coup that ousted Mohammed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood-led government. In September, the army launched a campaign against armed militants in Sinai, a desert region where the Bedouin population has long complained of neglect by several successive Egyptian governments. The turmoil has intensified since the army deposed Egypt's first democratically elected president and installed a new military-backed caretaker government in response to mass protests against the Muslim Brotherhood leader's rule.

On Saturday, state media quoted General Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, the man who toppled Morsi, as saying that army and police forces had worked together to "confront terrorism and all those who try to create problems and incite strife between the children of this nation."

Meanwhile, state media also reported that top security officials testified behind closed doors in Cairo in the retrial of former president Hosni Mubarak, who faces charges related to the killings of about 900 protesters during the 2011 uprising that led to his ouster. A court had previously convicted the former autocrat, now 85, of failing to stop the killings during the revolution, but Mubarak won an appeal earlier this year to return to court.

mkg/rc (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)


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