An explosive detonated as it was being carried by a man several miles from a tourist bazaar next the Pyramids of Giza on Sunday, police said. The man was severely injured.
The incident came amid heightened fears of attacks on tourists in Egypt after Saturday’s string of bombings in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik, 250 miles east of the capital, that killed 88 people. Security was increased in many parts of Cairo, including around the Pyramids, after the deadliest terrorist attacks in the nation’s history.
Investigators were trying to determine whether the man, identified as Sami Gamal Ahmad, 33, was taking the explosive to the nearby tourist area of Kerdassa, a bazaar of souvenir shops near the Pyramids, a senior security official involved in the investigation said.
The device, which the man was carrying in a sack, apparently went off accidentally in the neighborhood of Kufr Tuhurmus, several miles from Kerdassa, the official said on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the probe. No other injuries were reported.
Ahmad, who works at a downtown hospital, was too badly injured to be interrogated, the official said.
Initial reports said the blast went off in Ahmad’s home. The Interior Ministry earlier put out a statement saying the explosion hit his ground-floor apartment, where he may have been storing “leftover” explosive material.
The Sinai blasts were the latest in a number of attacks on tourists in the past nine months.
In April, a suicide bomber detonated a homemade bomb near the Cairo tourist bazaar of Khan al-Khalili, killing two French citizens and an American.
Days later, two veiled women shot at a tour bus in Cairo before fatally shooting themselves, and a suspect in the Khan attack died when the bomb he was carrying went off during a police chase.
In October, car bombs hit two hotels in the Sinai resorts of Taba and Ras Shitan, 120 miles north of Sharm el-Sheik, killing 24 people.