updated 10:03 AM MDT, Jun 24, 2017

Egypt launches airstrikes in Libya after Christians killed

MINYA, EGYPT – Egyptian fighter jets carried out strikes on Friday directed at camps in Libya which Cairo says have been training militants who killed dozens of Christians earlier in the day.

President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said he had ordered strikes against what he called terrorist camps, declaring in a televised address that states that sponsored terrorism would be punished.

Egyptian military sources said six strikes took place near Derna in eastern Libya at around sundown, hours after masked gunmen attacked a group of Coptic Christians traveling to a monastery in southern Egypt, killing 29 and wounding 24.

The Egyptian military said the operation was ongoing and had been undertaken once it had been ascertained that the camps had produced the gunmen behind the attack on the Coptic Christians in Minya, southern Egypt, on Friday morning.

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At least five dead in Egypt blasts

One person has been killed and eight wounded in a blast targeting police vehicles near a metro station in Cairo, Egyptian security officials said.

The blast occurred a few hours after a car bomb targeted Egyptian police headquarters in the heart of Cairo leaving four dead and scores wounded, officials said.

Witnesses say drops of blood were scattered at the site of the attack, also next to the Russian Culture Centre in the Dokki district.

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Egypt says it has ordered the Turkish ambassador to be expelled, following comments by Turkey's prime minister.


Egypt says it has ordered the Turkish ambassador to be expelled, following comments by Turkey's prime minister.

Saturday's decision comes after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan renewed his criticism of Egypt's new leaders earlier in the week.

Ties between the two countries have been strained since Egypt ousted its Islamist president, Mohamed Morsi, from office several months ago.

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Suicide car bomber kills soldiers 10 , seriously wounds 35 in Egypt's Sinai



CAIRO (AP) — A suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden car into one of two buses carrying off-duty soldiers in Egypt's turbulent region of northern Sinai, killing 10 and seriously wounding 35, security and military officials said.

They said the suicide bomber struck when the two buses traveled on the road between the border town of Rafah and the coastal city of el-Arish. The explosion damaged both buses, the officials said. The 10 victims were the bus's driver, three members of a security detail and six of the off-duty soldiers, according to a statement by Col. Mohammed Ahmed Ali, a military spokesman.

"The precious blood of our sons strengthens our resolve to cleanse Egypt and shield its sons from violence and treacherous terrorism," Ali wrote on his Facebook page. The wounded were being treated in military hospitals, he said.

The soldiers belong to the 2nd Field Army, which is doing most of the fighting against Islamic militant waging an insurgency against security forces in Sinai. The buses were on their way to Cairo, the officials said.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they weren't authorized to release the information.

The northern Sinai region, which borders Gaza and Israel, has been restless for years, but attacks have grown more frequent and deadlier since the July ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for Wednesday's attack, but suicide car bombings are a signature method by militant groups linked to or inspired by al-Qaida. It was the latest in a series of similar attacks targeting army and police facilities and checkpoints. In August, gunmen pulled 25 police conscripts off minibuses in the Sinai and shot them dead on the side of the main road linking Rafah to el-Arish.

Northern Sinai's violence occasionally has spilled over into cities in the southern part of the peninsula as well as mainland Egypt, targeting policemen, soldiers and politicians. In September, the Interior Minister, who is in charge of the police, survived an assassination attempt by a suicide car bomb. Earlier this week, a senior security officer who monitors Islamist groups, including Moris's Muslim Brotherhood, was shot dead as he drove in Cairo's eastern Nasr City district.

Nasr City is a Brotherhood stronghold and home to several military barracks.

Authorities have since Morsi's ouster waged a major crackdown against the Brotherhood, arresting some 2,000 top and middle-level members and several thousand followers. Hundreds were killed when security forces cleared two protest camps of Morsi supporters in August.

Morsi, along with the group's top leaders, are in detention and face trials on charges that vary from murder and inciting murder to conspiring with foreign powers and corruption.

Supporters of the former president have staged near-daily protests against the July 3 coup, mostly in universities. The number of protesters, however, has been dwindling, although they occasionally mass several thousand.

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