ISIS tried to inflict massive damage and failed. Great news.
A suicide bomber blew himself up on Wednesday just steps away from the ancient Egyptian temple of Karnak in Luxor, a southern city that attracts millions of tourists every year.
Shortly after the explosion, police exchanged fire with and killed two suspected Islamic militants who had arrived at the Nile-side temple with the suicide bomber, the officials said.
Four people, including two policemen, were wounded in the exchange, according to the Health Ministry in Cairo. Luxor Governor Mohammed Sayed Badr said no tourists were hurt in the bombing outside the famed temple. Speaking to The Associated Press over the phone, he said the attack was “an attempt to break into the temple of Karnak.”
“They didn’t make it in,” he added of the attackers.
Wednesday’s attack was the second this month by suspected Islamic militants at or near a major tourist attraction. On June 3, gunmen on a speeding motorcycle opened fire outside the famed Giza Pyramids on the outskirts of Cairo, killing two police officers.
Badr also offered a slightly different version of how the attack unfolded. He said three men carrying bags got out of a car in the temple’s parking lot, which immediately made the police suspicious and policemen ordered them to stop.
One of the three then began running, so the police fired at him and an explosive belt he was wearing blew up. A second man had a gun and started shooting at the police before he was shot and killed. The third attacker was wounded in the shootout and arrested by an undercover policeman.
Badr said the nationalities of the three men have yet to be determined. Badr’s account and that of the security officials could not immediately be reconciled, but that is common in the immediate aftermath of major attacks.
There were only a handful of tourists and Egyptians inside the temple at the time of the late morning attack, added the security officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.
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