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IS says responsible for attack that kills 8 Egyptian police

Updated: 2016-05-09 09:10
CAIRO - The Islamic State (IS) militant group said on Sunday it is responsible for a shooting attack that killed eight Egyptian police in the Helwan district south of the Capital Cairo, according to some social media reports.

However, the IS's claim has not been independently verified, while the Egyptian authorities have yet to confirm it.

Egypt's interior ministry said Sunday that gunmen shot dead eight policemen in the Helwan district south of the Capital Cairo in the early morning, adding that four assailants in a pickup truck intercepted the policemen, while traveling in minivan, and showered them with automatic rifle fire.

The dead included a lieutenant and seven lower ranking policemen who were patrolling the area south of the capital, it added.

Anti-security attacks have escalated following the ouster of the Islamist president Mohamed Morsi by the army in response to mass protests against his rule.

The Jihadists took from the restive Sinai Peninsula a center for most their operations. Other attacks have crept to the Capital and other cities.

Hundreds of police and army men have been killed in the attacks.

The militants often claim their attacks are in retaliation for a harsh police crackdown on Islamist supporters of Morsi, which has killed hundreds of protesters and detained thousands.

Ansar Beit Al-Maqdes, an affiliate to the Islamic State (IS) in Sinai, has claimed responsibility of most of the attacks.

It has been almost a year since last such attack occurred in the region. In June 2015, Militants killed a policeman standing guard outside a museum in Helwan area.

Bodies of the victims have been transferred to the Helwan Hospital morgue, and security men still comb the surrounding areas to catch the militants, who escaped the scene, the interior ministry added.

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