Nine people have been killed and five others have been injured in an attack outside a church in southern Cairo including a gunman, Egypt’s Health Ministry spokesman says.
Egyptian security officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the gunman opened fire outside a Coptic church before he was shot dead himself, and at least one policeman was among the dead.
Egypt’s state-run MENA news agency, citing an unnamed official at the Interior Ministry, said Friday’s attack in the Helwan neighbourhood was carried out by two assailants; one of them fled the scene and was being chased down.
Cairo’s security chief Khaled Abdel Al and a number of security officials headed instantly to the scene of the attack.
The health ministry also stated that it employed 10 ambulances to transfer the injured to hospitals.
Authorities have closed off the area around the church.
The attack comes days before the Coptic celebration of the new year and Orthodox Christmas Day on January 7.