CAIRO: Suspects in Tuesday’s Talbia police station blast have been spotted on surveillance cameras while they were heading to Giza Square, Spokesperson for Ministry of Interior Hany Abdel Latif announced Wednesday.
After the blast, Agnad Misr militant group, recently designated a terrorist group in Egypt and United States, and the Giza Popular Resistance Facebook page claimed responsibility for Tuesday’s attack, which killed a bomb expert.
Abdel Latif also announced that those who were involved in killing two police officers in front of a church in Minya Tuesday, coinciding with the Coptic celebrations of Christmas, were identified.
The identities and affiliations of both incidents’ perpetrators have not yet been officially determined yet.
The ministry announced in December a tight security plan to safeguard churches and institutions during the New Year and Christmas celebrations; where the plan was scheduled to process across Egypt from Dec. 25 until Jan. 7.
The occasional increase of security plans are not new to the Interior Ministry, as the country has been witnessing a series of bombings and attacks targeting police and army personnel. Islamist militant groups have claimed responsibility for a number of these attacks, including the North Sinai-based Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis group.
Most of the attacks took place by shooting and planting explosives near security ambushes and installations, which resulted in dozens of deaths among security personnel, as well as civilians.
Following Tuesday’s bombing, the bomb squad department called on citizens not to touch any strange body they found in the streets and to report its discovery quickly on the department’s emergency hotline.
The bomb planted near a police station in Giza detonated and killed the bomb expert trying to diffuse it.
The protection of the bomb squad through bomb suits and the prior trainings have been subject to discussion after Egyptians get accustomed to the scene of bomb diffusing in the streets since the ouster of the President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.
A former Assistant Minister of Interior, Major General Mohamed Nour el-Din told press outlets that the training system applied in the bomb squad department should be reconsidered, as police officers are vulnerable to such attacks all the time.
Youm7 interviewed Tuesday the head of the bomb squad, Major General Mohamed Gamal, where he said that they have international basic regulations that every member in the squad heading to diffuse a bomb understands he “might not return back.”
Gamal added that the bomb protective suit weighs 4.2 kilograms, and consists of a helmet equipped with headlamp and resists shrapnel of temperature 2000 Celsius degrees and speed 500 meters/second. The suit also includes a jacket, Integrated Communications System and a protection to the backbone and the hands.
Additional reporting by Ahmed Zyada, Ramy el-Masry and Ahmed Marei