At least four policemen were killed and 12 people injured after two bombs exploded outside a hotel in Egypt, Reuters reported, citing state news networks. The bomb blasts occurred outside a hotel that houses election judges in the city of al-Arish and comes just two days after the second round of parliamentary elections closed.
The Reuters report added that a suicide bomber tried to drive a car into the hotel, when security guards on the premises opened fire at him. The gunfire led the car to explode. Just minutes after the first bomb exploded, a second blast hit the site, according to the report.
Meanwhile, a report by Russia Today said that the Islamic State group’s Egypt affiliate claimed responsibility for the attack. According to a report by Gulf News, which cited Major Mohammad Khalaf, an official with the North Sinai Security Directorate, the bomb blast happened outside the Swiss Inn Hotel, following which there was gunfire in the area.
Egypt has witnessed similar attacks from the ISIS affiliate in the Sinai province, which has been trying to overthrow the country’s current government, Reuters reported.
The report added that ambulances reached the site of the blast, which was cordoned off by authorities.
Al-Arish is the capital of the northern Sinai region and lies over 60 miles from the site of the Russian Metrojet plane crash last month that killed 224 people. The investigation into the plane crash is ongoing, but reports Monday said that a bomb, under a seat, exploded, bringing the plane down.
The voting for Egypt’s parliamentary elections began last month and will conclude early December. The country has not had a parliament since 2012. President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who has been accused of crushing all opposition since he took power, currently holds legislative powers and will continue to do so until a new parliament is sworn in.