Egyptian forces clash with militants outside Cairo
Egyptian security forces clashed with militant groups in the Kerdasa district on the outskirts of Cairo on Thursday morning.
State media reported that Egyptian security forces fired tear gas and took cover behind buildings during the shootout with armed militants who hurled grenades at them.
The security forces were backed by helicopters throughout the operation to drive out the suspected terrorists, taking control over the town of Kerdasa from around 5.30 local time (3.30GMT).
In today’s open fire, Gen Nabil Farrag, the police chief of the city of Giza, was killed and a further more 10 officers injured.
Police have arrested at least 55 suspected militants.
The head of Egyptian security forces, Gen Medhat El Menshway, has disclosed that one of the arrested includes Ahman Uways, the man accused of killing the head of Kerdasa police station on 14th August.
Other detainees include people suspected of burning churches in the town and parading the bodies of police officers killed last month.
Commenting on today’s crossfire, Egypt’s interior Ministry spokesmen Gen Hani Abdel-Latif said the police now “planned to besiege the town along with the army, which would then deploy special forces to round up the armed men. There will be no treat until the city is cleansed of all terrorists and criminal hideouts.”
The security forces have urged the residents to stay indoors; all main roads have been blocked and armoured vehicles stationed at town entrances.
Today’s clash follows last months brutal assault on security forces when heavily armed suspected supporters of ousted president Mohammed Morsi killed 15 police officers and mutilated their bodies in Kerdasa, a city famous for its textile industry and now known as an Islamist stronghold.
It is estimated that over 1,000 people have died, including 100 police officers, since the unrest began in the country following Morsi’s ousting on July 3rd.