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Church Bombings Rock Palm Sunday in Egypt

Two blasts, first in the Nile Delta town of Tanta, then in Alexandria, targeted Coptic Egyptian churches during worship.

A man sits on a bench outside a church after a bomb attack in Tanta, Egypt, April 9, 2017. The attack took place on Palm Sunday, the start of the Holy Week leading up to Easter, when the church was packed with worshipers. It was one of two church blasts in Egypt, the second happening just hours later in Alexandria, that killed 44 people and wounded more than 100.

Nariman El-Mofty / AP
A relative of one of the victims reacts after the explosion. Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters

A man holds a Coptic clergy cloth with blood stains on it at Tanta's Mar Girgis church, about 90km north of Cairo, after the explosion.

Mohamed Hossam / EPA
Coptic priests sit among the damages next to security personnel investigating the scene in Tanta. Khaled Elfiqi / EPA
Security personnel investigate the scene of the explosion inside Mar Girgis church in Tanta. Khaled Elfiqi / EPA
Security personnel investigate the scene of the explosion in Tanta. Khaled Elfiqi / EPA
A palm leaf is stained with blood inside the Mar Girgis church. Khaled Elfiqi / EPA
People gather in front of the church in Tanta. Mohamed Hossam / EPA
A victim is seen on a stretcher in Tanta. Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters
A relative of one of the victims reacts after the explosion. Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters
Egyptians gather at the church in Tanta. Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters

Egyptians walk past the place near a church in Alexandria where a bomb blast struck worshipers. The Interior ministry said Coptic Pope Tawadros II was inside the church leading a Palm Sunday service when the suicide bomber was stopped by police outside and blew himself up. A church official said Tawadros had already left the church when the bombing took place.

AFP - Getty Images

People react at the scene after the blast.

AFP - Getty Images
Rescue workers push a stretcher with a victim outside the Saint Mark's Coptic Cathedral in Alexandria. Khaled Elfiqi / EPA
People react to the scene in Alexandria. Fawzy Abdel Hamied / Reuters
Two women react outside the Saint Mark's Coptic Cathedral in Alexandria, 250km northwest of Cairo. Khaled Elfiqi / EPA
An ambulance waits outside the cathedral. EPA
People react in anger following the Alexandria explosion. Hazem Gouda / AP
Members of Egypt's special forces take their positions after the attack. Fawzy Abdel Hamied / Reuters