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Egypt: Attack in Nile Delta leaves three police officers dead

CAIRO — Masked gunmen opened fire on a security checkpoint in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura, killing three police officers, Egyptian authorities said.

In a statement on its Facebook page, Egypt’s interior ministry said security forces had not identified the attackers but were searching for clues.

Attacks on checkpoints and other targets associated with the police and army have been more prevalent in the months since the July 3 military-led coup that ousted Islamist President Mohamed Morsi. Violence has been concentrated in the restive Sinai peninsula but has spread to other parts of the country as well.

PHOTO GALLERY: Turmoil in Egypt

Meanwhile, officials announced that arrests had been made in connection with a shooting last week outside a Coptic Christian church on the outskirts of Cairo that left at least five people dead, including an 8-year-old girl. The interior ministry, without giving details, announced that a number of suspects were in custody. Authorities and public opinion alike have cast suspicion on Islamist militant groups, although Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood denied any role in the attack.

Egypt’s military-backed interim government, with strong public backing, launched an expansive “anti-terror” campaign in the wake of Morsi’s ouster. In addition to a stepped-up military campaign in the Sinai, where security deteriorated during Morsi’s year in office, authorities have rounded up some 2,000 members of the Brotherhood. Morsi and some of his top lieutenants are to go on trial next week.

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