Egypt: Suspected bomb found near US embassy in Cairo

Egyptian security officials say they have arrested a man suspected of throwing a suspected explosive device near the heavily fortified US embassy in the heart of Cairo, Egypt‘s capital.

The man who threw it was detained by passers-by, before arrested by police.

They say the device was spotted on Tuesday outside the concrete barriers that encircle the embassy and the ambassador’s residence in the leafy district of Garden City.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

Witnesses told dpa that the person threw the device at the embassy, but it bounced back after hitting a concrete barrier close to the building, causing smoke to rise. 

A source told the New Arab website that the suspect was a young man in his 20s, and was wearing white trousers and a black T-shirt.

He had concealed the explosive device in a suitcase he was carrying, the source added.

The US embassy said in a tweet that it was “aware of a reported incident” near the embassy and advised US citizens to avoid the area.

The area around the embassy has for decades been heavily policed, with concrete barriers blocking vehicular traffic in its immediate vicinity.

In a tweet at 2:53pm local time (12:53 GMT), the embassy said the incident occurred on Simon Bolivar Street, which is located just metres from the building.

Translation: We are aware of an incident on the Simone Bolivar Street in Cairo. Please avoid the area and keep an eye on the local media for updates. We are aware of reports that public transport near the area has been disrupted by the accident. Please be careful.

The US embassy later tweeted that the police have completed their investigations at the scene, and that the embassy has resumed its normal business.

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