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6 Dead as Cairo Hit by Wave of Bomb Attacks

A wave of four bomb attacks kills 6 in Cairo on the eve of the anniversary of the 2011 uprising.
By Elad Benari, Canada
First Publish: 1/24/2014, 9:30 PM

Cairo clashes (archive)
Cairo clashes (archive)
Reuters

A wave of four bomb attacks hit Cairo on Friday and killed six people on the eve of the anniversary of the 2011 uprising which toppled former President Hosni Mubarak, AFP reports.

The first attack occurred when a car bomb struck Cairo police headquarters on Friday morning.

The bombings, all targeting the police, came as street clashes between Islamist supporters of deposed president Mohammed Morsi and backers of the military killed eight people, a day before planned rallies to mark the revolt that Mubarak from power.

CCTV footage filmed from a nearby building captured the first attack, when a white pick-up truck parked on a main street outside the security directorate exploded in cloud of thick smoke, reported AFP.

Two police officers can be seen in the video inspecting the car before walking into the headquarters, moments before the explosion.

Police, who had earlier blamed a suicide bomber, confirmed to AFP the authenticity of the CCTV footage aired by Egyptian media outlets.

The blast, which badly damaged the facade of the building, left a large crater in the ground and sent a plume of smoke billowing over the city.

Interior ministry spokesman Hany Abdel Latif told AFP that "the vehicle tried to get close to the building but was stopped at the gate. Casualties were relatively small given the size of the blast."

The bombing also damaged the nearby Museum of Islamic Art, bringing down ceilings and damaging exhibits, culture minister Mohamed Ibrahim told the news agency.

Hours later, a small makeshift bomb exploded near a police vehicle close to a metro station in the neighborhood of Dokki, killing a police conscript, security officials said.

Two other bombs went off hours apart in a neighborhood close to the Giza pyramids, one killing a person and wounding four conscripts near a cinema.

The other struck outside a police station, without causing any casualties, police told AFP.

Later, at least eight people were killed when Islamist protesters clashed with their civilian opponents and police in several cities, said security officials and state media.

Deadly clashes between supporters and opponents of Morsi have become a weekly ritual since the former president's overthrow.

The pro-Morsi National Pro-Legitimacy Alliance condemned the bombing of the security headquarters but said it would go ahead with its "peaceful struggle against (the) coup."

The attacks come on the heels of a constitutional referendum that passed overwhelmingly last week and which promised a "democratic transition" by the interim military government.

Army Chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took the referendum as a vote of confidence for his presidential bid, that was backed by Egypt’s interim Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi on Thursday.

The interim government in Cairo has blacklisted Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood as a terror organization, sparking new tensions between the military and the Brotherhood's supporters.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American Desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)