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Update: 17 killed in Province of Sinai suicide bomber attack near Alexandria church

A suicide bomber detonated an explosive device he was wearing on his person near St. Mark Coptic Orthodox Church in Alexandria on Sunday, a few minutes after Coptic Orthodox Pope Tawadros II left the church where had delivered Palm Sunday prayer earlier that morning.

The death toll in the bombing that occurred in the Manshiya area has reached 17, while 33 have been reported injured, including four who are in critical condition, the spokesperson for the Health Ministry directorate in Alexandria told Mada Masr.

 

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Posted by Nardine Emad William on Sunday, April 9, 2017

 

Province of Sinai has claimed responsibility for the bombing, and for another Palm Sunday church bombing at the St. George Coptic Orthodox Church in Tanta, according to the Islamic State Amaq news outlet’s Telegram account.

Province of Sinai claim responsibility for Palm Sunday church bombings in Tanta and Alexandria

Four of those killed in the bombing were police officers, a security source told Extra News.

Earlier Sunday morning, another explosion took place at the St. George Coptic Orthodox Church in Tanta, in the Nile Delta governorate of Gharbiya, killing at least 30 people and injuring a reported 78 others.

Alexandria church bombing, Palm Sunday - Courtesy: Mohamed Gamal

After meeting with the National Defense Council on Sunday night, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi stated that he intends to declare a three-month state of emergency, which will be subject to Parliament’s approval within seven days of his official declaration.

Earlier in the day, Sisi ordered the deployment of military units to assist police in securing “vital and important buildings across the nation,” according to Egypt’s presidential spokesperson.

Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit and Egypt’s Grand Mufti Shawky Allam condemned the attack, according to state television, as did Pope Francis, who is due to visit Egypt at the end of April.

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