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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 11 December 2018

Egypt hangs five prisoners, four for bombing army cadets

The hangings came days after the largest mass execution in recent Egyptian memory

Egyptians watch a match between Egyptian Premier League clubs Zamalek and ENPPI at the Air Defense Stadium in a suburb east of Cairo, Egypt. Ahmed Abd El-Gwad, El Shorouk Newspaper / AP
Egyptians watch a match between Egyptian Premier League clubs Zamalek and ENPPI at the Air Defense Stadium in a suburb east of Cairo, Egypt. Ahmed Abd El-Gwad, El Shorouk Newspaper / AP

Egyptian prison authorities executed five inmates on Tuesday, four of them for a bombing that killed military cadets, security officials said.

Four of those executed on Tuesday had been sentenced to death by a military court over the 2015 bombing at a stadium north of Cairo that killed three military cadets.

They were accused of having links with the Muslim Brotherhood movement of former president Mohammed Morsi, who was toppled by the army in 2013 after protests against his single year in office.

The fifth had been sentenced to death over a criminal matter, the sources said.

On December 26, prison authorities hanged 15 inmates in Egypt's largest mass execution in modern times after a military court found them guilty of attacks on the police and military in the Sinai Peninsula.

Attacks by extremists in the restive region have killed hundreds of security personnel since Morsi's overthrow.

Courts have since sentenced hundreds to death, although most have appealed against the rulings and won retrials.

Meanwhile Egypt's public prosecutor has filed murder charges against a man accused of killing 11 people in an attack on a Coptic church and a Christian-owned shop in a Cairo suburb last week, judicial sources said.

The man, arrested after the December 29 attack, was receiving medical treatment in custody for injuries sustained in an exchange of gunfire with authorities outside the church. The prosecutor ordered him to be held pending investigations, the sources said.

"He is accused of premeditated murder, attempted murder, possession of an unlicensed weapon and using it for terrorist activity," a judicial source said.

ISIL claimed responsibility for the attacks shortly afterwards, although it provided no evidence for the claim.

Militants have claimed several attacks on Egypt's large Christian minority in recent years, including two bombings on Palm Sunday in April and a blast at Cairo's largest Coptic cathedral in December 2016, which killed 28 people.

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