A security personnel stands guard, during the forensics team investigation of a bombing in Alexandria, Egypt March 24, 2018. REUTERS
The Egyptian police said they had killed six Hasm terrorist group members believed to be behind a failed assassination attempt on Alexandria’s security chief on Saturday, which left two policemen dead and injured several others.
In an official statement, Egypt's interior ministry said the terrorists were killed on Sunday dawn following a shootout in a residential apartment in Beheira governorate, around 89 kilometres from the Mediterranean city which witnessed Saturday's attack.
The ministry identified three of the terrorists, adding that the three men were wanted by the authorities in a 2017 Supreme State Security case related to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood's "militant wing."
The killed members of the cell were led by fugitive Brotherhood leader Bassem Gad, who the interior ministry said was responsible for ordering an execution of Saturday's attack in Alexandria.
According to the statement, Gad ordered the cell members to detonate a car bomb targeting El-Nemr’s convoy.
The cell has also received orders from leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood abroad to target a number of prominent figures and vital facilities in Alexandria, Beheira, and Kafr El-Sheikh.
The interior ministry said in a Saturday statement that an improvised explosive device placed under a car detonated as El-Nemr’s convoy passed through El-Moaskar El-Romany Street in Alexandria.
Hasm did not claim responsibility for the attack through its social media channels.
The attack came two days before Egypt hold the 2018 presidential elections, which will take place from Monday to Wednesday.
Egypt's interior ministry and military have been beefing up security nationwide ahead of the elections, where incumbent President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi is facing the head of the Ghad Party Moussa Mostafa Moussa.