“The European Union expresses its deepest condolences to the victims and their families and wishes a prompt recovery to those wounded in this act of terror”, the European External Action Service spokesperson said, reacting upon a car bomb explosion in Cairo on August 4, which has left at least 20 people dead, and many injured.
“The European Union stands side by side with Egypt in its efforts to defeat terrorism in the country”.
An explosion in Cairo was terrorist-related, Egypt‘s president Al Sisi said.
“I extend my deepest condolences to the Egyptian people and the families of the martyrs killed in the cowardly terrorist incident in the vicinity of the Kasr al-Aini area yesterday evening,” he wrote in his official social media account, paying tribute to victims.
A policeman perished, while attempting to defuse a bomb outside a Coptic Christian church in Egypt, security officials said.
Late Mustafa Abid was reportedly a specialist in mine clearance. The explosion injured two other officers and one pedestrian.
The device was hidden in a bag on a roof by the church in Nasr City outside Cairo.
Coptic Christmas is celebrated on January 7, following non-recognition of the canon of the Catholic Church (1582) Gregorian calendar reform.
The raids, conducted at dawn Saturday, December 29, targeted three whereabouts of suspected terrorists who were planning hostile acts during the Christmas holidays, according to the state-run Al-Ahram online newspaper.
Ammunition, firearms and improvised explosive devices were recovered in significant numbers, Al-Ahram said, citing the Interior ministry statement.
The raids were ordered after the bus attack “as a continuation of the ministry’s efforts in chasing terrorist elements involved in the implementation of hostile operations seeking to destabilize the country’s security,” the statement said.
“Information was available to the national security sector about the preparation and planning of a series of terrorist attacks targeting state institutions, especially economy, tourism industry, armed forces, police and Christian houses of worship.”
Three Vietnamese tourists and an Egyptian tour guide were killed and at least 11 people were injured in the attack December 28, in a lively tourist area of Giza, near Cairo, at proximity of Great pyramids.
According to the information of the Interior ministry two people died instantly, and 12 others were wounded in touristic bus explosion in Egypt. Among victims tourists from Vietnam and China. The incident took place next to a popular site of Great Pyramids of Giza.
Egypt authorities qualified the blast as a terrorist attack, highly likely of Islamic state (Caliphate).
The bus was carrying 12 Vietnamese tourists near near the Giza Pyramids, when an homemade device placed near a wall along the Mariyutiya street went off.
Two people died instantly, 10 were injured as well as the bus driver and the tour guide, both Egyptians.
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The Egyptian tour guide later succumbed to his wounds in hospital, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly told journalists. The death toll was then further raised to four as one of the tourists also died in the hospital, according to the office of the Egyptian Prosecutor General.
A Lebanese tourist arrested last month for posting a video on Facebook complaining of sexual harassment by men and conditions in Egypt was sentenced to eight years in prison by a Cairo court on Saturday, July 7.
Ms. Mona el-Mazboh was arrested at Cairo airport at the end of her stay in Egypt after a 10-minute video in which she called Egypt a “son of a bitch country” went viral on social media.
The 24-year-old Ms.Mazboh complains of being sexually harassed by taxi drivers and young men in the street, as well as poor restaurant service during the holy month of Ramadan and an incident in which money was stolen from her during a previous stay.
A Cairo court found her guilty of deliberately spreading false rumours that would harm society, attacking religion, and public indecency, judicial sources said.
While a video of a tourist is a personal point of view, the conviction of the Court will have an effect of a massive repellent for tourists from the West to come to Egypt, which will cause further damages to the entire tourist industry, going through difficult times since Arab Spring.
EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini will be attending meeting of Libya Quartet hosted by the League of Arab States in Cairo. (Image: Tuyuri neighborhood in Sebha, south Libya, courtesy Claudia Gazzini)
The aim of the Libya Quartet is to support UN mediation and regional efforts and to accompany the process of the political transition in Libya, in full respect of Libyan ownership. On Monday, the Libya Quartet will discuss progress in the UN mediation efforts, led by UNSG Special Representative Ghassan Salamé, and explore ways in which these key regional groupings can keep supporting this work.
A joint press conference will take place after the plenary meeting on Monday evening at 19.30 CET. EBS will provide audio-visual coverage.