A policeman dies when he deactivates explosive placed near a Coptic church in Cairo

A policeman dies when he deactivates explosive placed near a Coptic church in Cairo

A policeman died today while trying to defuse an explosive device that had been placed near a church in a neighborhood east of Cairo, a day before Masses for Christmas of the Coptic Christian minority in Egypt, reported Efe a source of security.

The explosion took place near the Virgin Mary and San Mercurio Church, located in the area of ​​Ezbet al Hagana, in the Nasr City neighborhood, east of the capital, when the deceased explosives specialist, identified as Mustafa Obid, tried to deactivate the artifact placed inside a suitcase, said the source.

He added that at least two soldiers were injured by the explosion of the device, which was located a few meters from the temple.

Police have deployed in the area and have imposed a security cordon around the church, the source added.

So far no group has claimed responsibility for this action.

The event occurs at a time when Christian Coptic churches are preparing to receive Christmas in the country, which is celebrated on January 7.

The Egyptian Armed Forces have taken extreme measures to guarantee security during the Christmas celebrations of the Christian minority, which represents about 10% of the population in Egypt.

This community has been the victim of brutal attacks by the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) against its temples, as in December 2016 in Cairo, shortly before Christmas, and in April 2017 in Tanta and Alexandria, before Easter.

In addition, last November seven Coptic Christians died in an attack by the IS against a bus that was heading to the monastery of San Samuel, in the province of Minia, in southern Egypt.

It was the same scenario of another IS assault in May 2017, in which 28 worshipers perished.

Since December 2016, the EI, which has a subsidiary based in the Sinai Peninsula, has claimed several attacks that have claimed the lives of more than a hundred people in Egyptian churches.


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