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Tourists wounded in Egyptian resort attack

Published 08/01/2016

Two tourists were stabbed in a Red Sea resort
Two tourists were stabbed in a Red Sea resort

Two suspected militants have stabbed and wounded three foreign tourists at a hotel in the Egyptian Red Sea resort city of Hurghada.

Security forces opened fire at the two assailants, killing one and seriously wounding the other, the Interior Ministry said.

It said two men armed with knives had entered the hotel's outdoor restaurant at the front of the building and attacked the tourists.

All three wounded tourists, two Austrians and a Swede, were taken to hospital, where one was treated and discharged, the statement said. There was no word on the condition of the other two.

Security officials had initially said the attackers wounded two tourists, a Dane and a German, but such discrepancies are common in the immediate aftermath of terror attacks.

The attack came just hours after the local affiliate of the Islamic State claimed responsibility for an attack a day earlier on a hotel in Cairo near the Giza Pyramids. No one was hurt in the Thursday attack.

Egypt has been battling an insurgency by Islamic militants led by the Islamic State's affiliate. The insurgency has been focused in the northern part of the Sinai Peninsula but has frequently spilled over into the mainland since the ousting in 2013 of the Islamist president Mohammed Morsi.

The Hurghada attack is a dangerous precedent since Egypt's Red Sea resorts have done better than elsewhere in the country in withering the slump suffered by the vital tourism sector in the five years of turmoil since a popular uprising toppled longtime ruler Hosni Mubarak.

Thursday's attack was also significant in that it targeted a hotel in Cairo, a heavily policed city, at a time when security appeared to improve in recent months after a series of disruptive bomb attacks.

Egypt's tourist industry was decimated after the downing of a Russian passenger plane over Sinai in October. The local Islamic State affiliate has claimed it downed the aircraft with a bomb. All 224 people on board were killed in the crash, mostly Russian tourists.

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