Thursday, April 24, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Powerful bombing at Egypt police station kills 13

MANSOURA, Egypt — A powerful blast tore through a police headquarters in an Egyptian Nile Delta city early Tuesday, killing 13 people, wounding more than 100 and leaving victims buried under rubble in the deadliest bombing yet in a months-long wave of violence blamed on Islamic militants.

Officials sought to pin the ultimate blame for the bombing on the government’s top political nemesis, the Muslim Brotherhood, which has been leading a campaign of protests since the July ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi. The Brotherhood in turn accused the government of trying to scapegoat it to justify intensifying a crackdown.

At the funeral for the 12 policeman and one civilian killed, hundreds massed in a main square of the city of Mansoura where the bombing took place, chanting, “The people want to execute the Brotherhood.” They raised posters reading “no to terrorist groups” and pictures of military chief Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who removed Morsi and is the country’s most powerful figure.

Egypt has seen an escalating campaign of spectacular bombings and gun attacks, mainly against security forces, since the military ousted Morsi and launched a fierce crackdown on his Muslim Brotherhood. Most attacks have been centered in the Sinai Peninsula, where multiple militant groups operate, but the insurgency has been spreading to the heavily populated Delta and the capital, Cairo.

The military-backed interim government has sought to portray the Brotherhood as largely responsible for violence — though authorities have presented no evidence. A government panel was meeting Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss declaring the group officially as a “terrorist organization.”

Such a move would further tarnish the group before Egyptians vote in a Jan. 14-15 referendum on a revised constitution, a key step in the military-backed transition plan. Morsi’s supporters oppose the new document, which amends the constitution passed under his rule. But the interim government is pushing for its overwhelming passage to show the legitimacy of the military’s ouster of Morsi and the new political system.

Last week, prosecutors referred Morsi and other top Brotherhood leaders to trial on charges of organizing a large terrorist conspiracy, working with Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran and other militant groups and orchestrating the Sinai insurgency to avenge his ouster. Morsi supporters and rights groups have called the accusations implausible.

Interim Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi stopped short of directly blaming the Brotherhood for the attack, which he called the “worst kind of terrorism” against the state. But he grouped it in with the pro-Morsi protests as part of a string of “violations of the people’s security.”

He called the attack a “maximum offense” to Egypt and will be dealt with decisively and according to the law, without elaborating. El-Beblawi said his government has been working to implement a court order in late September banning the Brotherhood.

One of his spokesmen, Sherif Shawki, went further, accusing the Brotherhood, which he said showed its “ugly face as a terrorist organization, shedding blood and messing with Egypt’s security,” according to the state news agency MENA

The attack on the security headquarters in Mansoura — a provincial capital 110 kilometers (70 miles) north of Cairo that is considered a stronghold for the Brotherhood — was the first major bombing in the Nile Delta. The same building had been targeted in July, when an explosive planted outside killed a policeman and wounded another.

Tuesday’s 1:10 a.m. blast brought down an entire section and side wall of the five-floor building. Dozens of parked cars were incinerated, and several nearby buildings were damaged, including a bank and theater. Associated Press video from the scene showed bulldozers clearing the rubble.

An unidentified senior security official told MENA that a pick-up truck laden with a large amount of explosives is suspected to be behind the attack. He said investigators are still looking to see whether it was detonated by timer or remote control.

But another official said the bomb may have been planted outside the building, saying no traces of a bomb vehicle or the explosive device itself had been found yet. The official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to reporters.

The dead included 12 policemen, including two officers, and 1 civilian, according to a police statement. Health Ministry spokesman Mohammed Fatahallah said 101 people were wounded. Among the injured were the city’s security chief — who lost an eye — and his assistant, the state news agency MENA reported. Most of the victims were policemen, many of whom were buried beneath the debris.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the bombing.

A day earlier, an al-Qaida-inspired group that has carried out multiple suicide bombings and other attacks in Sinai — Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, or the Champions of Jerusalem — threatened more attacks on the military and police, saying it considers Egyptian troops to be infidels because they answer to the secular-leaning military-backed government.

The group has gained particular notoriety by striking outside the peninsula in recent months. It claimed responsibility for a failed attempt to assassinate the interior minister with a suicide bombing against his convoy in Cairo in September. The minister escaped unharmed.

Several political parties called for the government to declare the Brotherhood a terrorist group. The Popular Current, one secular grouping, called the Brotherhood “the biggest sponsor and the political incubator for the terrorist attacks that take place in Egypt” and urged the government to go after Brotherhood leadership abroad.

Social Solidarity Minister Ahmed el-Borai, who is among those in charge of the review of the Brotherhood status, said declaring it a terrorist organization was inevitable.

A terrorism designation would further escalate the crackdown against the Brotherhood, which was once the country’s strongest political organization, winning elections the past three years and dominating the government during Morsi’s one year presidency.

In a statement Tuesday, the Brotherhood condemned the bombing as a “direct attack on the unity of the Egyptian people.” It accused the government of “exploiting” the violence to target the group and “create further violence, chaos and instability.”

Mohammed el-Damati, a Brotherhood lawyer, said there is no legal basis for declaring the group a terrorist organization and warned that doing so “will lead ultimately to the country sliding toward civil strife … All these measures will incur revenge that will be no longer limited to Islamist or militant groups.”

He said authorities want to pin the terrorism label on the Brotherhood to pressure foreign governments and international organizations to follow suit and to pressure Egyptians to vote in favor of the constitution.

The Brotherhood and its Islamist allies have been holding near daily protests demanding Morsi’s reinstatement, which often descend into clashes with security and anti-Brotherhood civilians. The protests have been met by a crushing crackdown that has killed hundreds of protesters and jailed thousands. At the same time, the army and security forces have been waging an offensive in Sinai against militant groups. Officials say more than 180 suspected militants and more than 170 policemen have been killed in violence the past months.

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
Congressman talks Travis, water

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 4 Comments | Gallery

Travis lines up 2 days of aviation excellence

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Appreciate how good we have it now

By Angela Borchert | From Page: A2

 
 
Dixon May Fair has deals on advance tickets

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Garamendi talks love, pro football and Peace Corps

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 4 Comments | Gallery

 
Author to sign books at Vacaville Museum

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

Kroc Center women schedule inaugural Taster Tea

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Docents to lead paddling tour in marsh

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A4

Juneteenth committee extends vendors, exhibitors deadline

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Congressional Art Competition is back

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Spilled tomato juice case set for trial

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4, 5 Comments

Theme park welcomes seal pup

By Adrienne Harris | From Page: A4

 
 
Suisun City police log: April 22, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Suisun City police log: April 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Fairfield police log: April 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Weather for Thursday, April 24, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B12

Fairfield police log: April 22, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
.

US / World

Syrian activists accuse Assad of new gas attacks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Murder charge for Vallejo man in head-on crash

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

California bill reignites affirmative action fight

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 3 Comments

 
Andy Lopez protest leads to school campus lockdown

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 3 Comments

Navy Cross bestowed on heroic Marine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Airport official: Teen had no clue he was in Maui

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

US weighs clemency for inmates jailed for 10 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

 
Gun carry rights expanded in Ga. under new law

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 4 Comments

First lady announces one-stop job site for vets

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 2 Comments

 
Rail safety effort marred by squabbling

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

Small Wyoming town evacuated after gas explosion

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Bashtag: NYPD Twitter campaign backfires

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

Soldier convicted in WikiLeaks case gets new name

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Lawyer: US man held in Cuba seeks to go home soon

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

Captain who left doomed ferry had 40 years at sea

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Russian social media CEO quits, flees country

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Amid Russia warning, Ukraine is in a security bind

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

 
Palestinian rivals to try again for unity deal

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Camilla’s brother dies in US after head injury

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
State senators get ethics training after scandals

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12, 7 Comments

.

Opinion

Question of the week: Will Flight 370 be found?

By Daily Republic | From Page: A11

 
Be the first and give specifics

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 2 Comments

What we can do about crime

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A11, 14 Comments

 
Castro at odds with mentor on deportations

By Ruben Navarrette | From Page: A11

Some Earth Day boos and cheers

By Jay Ambrose | From Page: A11

 
.

Living

Today in History for April 24, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: April 24, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

When Joe’s mad at me, he also ignores my 7-year-old son

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

 
Horoscopes for April 24, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Jodie Foster weds artist Alexandra Hedison

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Singer Chris Brown’s DC trial delayed for months

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Performing dogs go big after $1 million TV prize

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Amazon snares classic shows in deal with HBO

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
.

Sports

Mustangs swim to sweep of Indians

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Warriors, Clippers to meet in Oakland for Game 3

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Sharks confident with chance to sweep LA Kings

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Girls soccer update: Armijo, Vanden on way to playoffs

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1 | Gallery

A’s reject 10-year Coliseum lease offer

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Prep softball: Vanden rolls to 14-0 win over Fairfield

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

 
Prep badminton: Unbeaten Mustangs cruise past Crushers

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Prep boys golf: Vikings suffer SCAC loss to Panthers

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

 
Sanchez’s slam in 11th helps Giants beat Rox 12-10

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Prep track: Armijo girls get win in MEL 4-way meet

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

 
Perez helps Rangers sweep A’s with 3-0 win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Party a century in the making for Wrigley Field

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Emmert supports more efficient, effective NCAA

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Phelps having fun in his return to swimming

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
Suns’ Dragic honored as NBA’s Most Improved Player

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Seahawks to open NFL season vs. Packers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Oldest living ex-MLB player dies in Cuba at 102

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

 
.

Business

Wellness programs grow more popular with employers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Sales of new US homes plunge 14.5 percent in March

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Buffett disapproves of Coca-Cola’s pay plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Amazon snares classic shows in deal with HBO

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

US stocks edge lower after a six-day rise

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
Facebook 1Q results soar; CFO to step down

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

Apple increases stock buyback, will split stock

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6, 1 Comment

 
.

Obituaries

Phyllis J. Miller

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Dondi Martin

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Wizard Of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9