News / Middle East

Blast at Egyptian Army Building Wounds 4 Soldiers in Delta

Reuters
A bomb targeted an Egyptian  military intelligence building north of Cairo on Sunday, wounding four soldiers, the army said, in the second bomb attack on the security forces in the Nile Delta in less than a week.

The bomb went off near an entrance to the building in the village of Anshas, 100 km (65 miles) north of Cairo in Sharkiya province. It partially destroyed the back wall of the building, the army said, describing it as a terrorist attack.

 It follows a suicide bomb attack on Tuesday on a police compound in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura that killed 16 people. The army-backed government has said the violence will not derail a political transition plan whose next step is a mid-January referendum on a new constitution.

Sunday's blast, about 80 km (50 miles) north of the site of Tuesday's bombing pointed to the widening reach of militant attacks that have become commonplace since the army deposed Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July.

 Around 350 police and soldiers have been killed in bombings  and shootings since Morsi was deposed, most of them in the Sinai Peninsula, where Islamist radicals expanded into a security vacuum left by the Hosni Mubarak's downfall in 2011.

The security forces killed hundreds of Morsi's supporters in  the months after his removal, and have arrested thousands more.

Two security sources described Sunday's bomb as an explosive device, while the state-run Nile News TV station said it was a car bomb. Sources previously said it went off in the town of Belbeis, near Anshas.

Five people were wounded by a bomb that went off near a bus  in Cairo on Thursday. That bomb appeared to be the first targeting civilians, though there was no claim of responsibility saying what had been targeted.

The authorities say they have defused several other bombs in recent days. On Sunday, police found and defused a crude homemade bomb inside a bag left outside a university building in the Nile Delta city of Damietta.

More attacks expected

Already high political tensions have escalated further since last week's suicide attack. The state declared the Brotherhood a terrorist organization a day later and has arrested several hundred of its supporters in its widening crackdown on the group.

Some analysts say Egypt faces the risk of a protracted spell of Islamist attacks, as well as civil strife fuelled by friction between supporters and opponents of the Muslim Brotherhood: street clashes have killed seven people in the past three days.

The Brotherhood, which propelled Morsi to victory in last year's presidential election, condemned the suicide attack. A radical Sinai-based group called Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis claimed responsibility for that bombing.

The army-backed government has declared itself in “a war on terror” as it steers Egypt through the new political transition plan expected to yield presidential and parliamentary elections next year.

Army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who led Morsi's overthrow, is widely seen as the favorite to win that election, though he has yet to declare his candidacy.

Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis has claimed responsibility for other major attacks since Morsi's downfall, including a failed attempt to assassinate the interior minister in September.

The group emerged in North Sinai after Mubarak's downfall, mounting attacks including a string of bombings targeting a pipeline used to export gas to Israel and Jordan.

“There will be more [attacks]. I don't think that any factor  has changed that would lessen the attacks at least in the short-term,” said H.A. Hellyer, a Cairo-based fellow with the Royal United Services Institute.

“Those that oppose the army and want to see Morsi's reinstatement go beyond the Muslim Brotherhood - and it is likely some non-Brotherhood Islamists have turned to violence, including, but not exclusively, those within the Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis group,” he said.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

America's Most Exotic Presidential Pets

From alligators to bears, the White House has been home to some unusual presidential pets over the years More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs