Terrorist attack in Luxor's Karnak did not affect temple: Official

Nevine El-Aref , Wednesday 10 Jun 2015

Karnak temple on Luxor's east bank is safe after a failed attack near its parking area

The entrance of Karnak temple (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Director General of Luxor Antiquities Sultan Eid told Ahram Online that all the monuments in Karnak temple, as well as its visitors and archaeological inspectors, are safe.

"The incident happened in the parking area which is 700 metres from the temple gate," he pointed out, and asserted that the temple is open and did not shut its gates for visitors as rumoured. Security was tightened in order to safeguard the temple and its visitors.

Police shot dead two militants following a failed attempt to commit a terrorist attack at the parking area near Karnak temple, a distinguished ancient Egyptian monument on Luxor's east bank. The site includes a large variety of ancient Egyptian structures such as temples, chapels, pylons and shrines that were built in between the reigns of the Middle Kingdom King Senusert I right through to the Ptolemaic period.

Eid, an eyewitnss to the incident himself, told Ahram Online that one of the militants blew himself up when the tourism and antiquities police at the temple realised the militants presence.

He went on to say that the men who carried out the attack arrived to the area and sat at a coffee shop outside the temple near the parking lot and when a tourist group arrived with their bus they tried to join the tourists but the policemen were suspicious of their actions.

"The suicide bomber blew himself up and the other two suspected Islamic militants began to exchange gunshots with policemen and the suspect was shot dead," Eid said.

Minister of Antiquities Mamdouh Eldamaty travelled to Luxor on an inspection tour immediately after the attack.

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