Two Egyptian police officers killed in attack

AFP , Sunday 20 Apr 2014

Police captain Ashraf Kazzaz
Police captain Ashraf Kazzaz, who was killed in the attack (File Photo: Ahram)

A police officer and a conscript were killed after armed attackers opened fire on their patrol car, Egypt's interior ministry announced on Sunday, the latest deadly assault against the country's security forces.

The deaths come as militants have stepped up their attacks against security forces since the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July after mass protests against his rule, and just two days after a police officer was killed in a bomb blast in Cairo.

A statement from the ministry said those killed were patrolling the road between Cairo and Suez.

A little-known jihadist group, Ajnad Misr, has vowed fresh attacks against security forces.

But the deadliest attacks have been claimed by Sinai-based Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, a jihadist group inspired by Al-Qaeda.

Official figures show that more than 500 people -- mostly policemen and soldiers -- have been killed in bombing and shooting assaults by militants since July.

Most militant attacks have been in the restive Sinai Peninsula, but in recent months brazen attacks have also been launched farther afield in the Nile Delta and in the capital.

The authorities blame the Brotherhood for the attacks and have blacklisted it as a "terrorist organisation".

This story has been edited by Ahram Online.

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