Deadly car bombing rocks Alexandria days before Egyptian election
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An explosion rocked Egypt’s second-largest city of Alexandria Saturday, killing a policeman and wounding four others, according to the interior ministry.
A car bombing targeted a security convoy near the luxury Royal Tulip Hotel along the coast in Alexandria’s Roshdi district, sending plumes of black smoke billowing on el Romany Street.
The bombing had targeted Alexandria's security chief, the ministry said in a statement. But he was unharmed according to Egyptian media reports.
The explosion came amid heightened security across Egypt as the world’s most populous Arab nation heads to the polls Monday for a presidential election in which President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi is virtually guaranteed a re-election following a crackdown on the opposition.
Egypt has been under a state of emergency since April 2017 and the latest bombing raises questions about the security situation in the country. The Islamic State (IS) group has claimed suicide attacks targeting Coptic Christian churches and the restive Sinai Peninsula is under a massive security clampdown.
Reporting from Alexandria for FRANCE 24, Alexandre Buccianti said the bomb, which exploded as the convoy of the city’s security chief passed, “was probably remote controlled, but it was not of a big intensity since, according to the images and according to witnesses, it destroyed some cars but it was not a huge bomb”.
Witnesses said the area around the Royal Tulip Hotel had been cordoned off with security officials forming a perimeter around the site.
(FRANCE 24 with AP and REUTERS)