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Bomb Attack Near Egypt’s Pyramids Kills Four, Injures 12
Vietnamese tourists and egyptian guide among fatalities.
Dec. 28, 2018 5:08 pm ET
A bomb attack on a sightseeing bus near Egypt’s famed pyramids killed at least four people and wounded 12 others on Friday, as attackers struck a target near the heart of the country’s struggling tourist industry.
Egypt’s security forces provide assistance to tourist convoys, but Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly said the bus deviated from a designated route without notifying authorities.
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- Copy URL https://www.pbs.org/newshour/world/bomb-hits-tourist-bus-near-egypts-giza-pyramids-wounds-17
Bomb hits tourist bus near Egypt’s Giza Pyramids, wounds 17
CAIRO — A roadside bomb hit a tourist bus on Sunday near the Giza Pyramids, wounding at least 17 people including tourists, Egyptian officials said.
An ambulance at the site of a blast near the Giza pyramids in Cairo, Egypt May 19, 2019. Photo by Stringer/via Reuters
The officials said the bus was traveling on a road close to the under-construction Grand Egyptian Museum, which is located adjacent to the Giza Pyramids but is not yet open to tourists.
The bus was carrying at least 25 people mostly from South Africa, officials added.
Security forces cordoned off the site of the explosion and the wounded were taken to a nearby hospital, they said.
A damaged bus is seen at the site of a blast near a new museum being built close to the Giza pyramids in Cairo, Egypt May 19, 2019. Photo by Ahmed Fahmy/Reuters
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to brief media.
Egypt has battled Islamic militants for years in the Sinai Peninsula in an insurgency that has occasionally spilled over to the mainland, hitting minority Christians or tourists.
The attack comes as Egypt’s vital tourism industry is showing signs of recovery after years in the doldrums because of the political turmoil and violence that followed a 2011 uprising that toppled former leader Hosni Mubarak.
It is the second to target foreign tourists near the famed pyramids in less than six months. In December, a bus carrying 15 Vietnamese tourists was hit by a roadside bomb, killing at least three of them.
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Attack on Tourist Bus Near Egyptian Pyramids Wounds at Least 14
By Declan Walsh
- May 19, 2019
CAIRO — An explosion apparently targeting a bus filled with tourists near the pyramids of Giza in Egypt wounded at least 14 people on Sunday, according to security officials and the state-run news media.
The attack occurred close to a giant national museum that is under construction near the pyramids and that is scheduled to open next year. It was the second attack on tourists in Giza in six months, and it suggested that armed militants opposed to President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi were seeking to undermine his authority by hitting tourists at a time when he is planning a gala opening for the long-awaited institution.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for Sunday’s attack. Previous violence against tourists has been claimed by the Islamic State’s Egyptian affiliate and by other armed Islamist factions opposed to Mr. el-Sisi.
Four people, including three Vietnamese tourists and an Egyptian guide, died in a bomb attack on a tourist bus in Cairo in December.
There were no initial reports of deaths from Sunday’s blast. Photographs posted to social media showed some people walking away from a bus whose side windows had been blown out. A construction site could be seen in the background.
Ahram Online, a state-run news outlet, said that the bus had been carrying 25 tourists from South Africa and that most of the 14 wounded were from that country. Later, South Africa’s foreign ministry said that three of its citizens were receiving medical treatment in Egypt and the rest would return home.
The new Grand Egyptian Museum is a prestige project for Mr. el-Sisi, who cemented his hold on power last month with a referendum that allows him to stay in his position until 2030 .
Construction has been underway at the $1 billion museum since 2002. Officials say it is scheduled to open in 2020, and Mr. el-Sisi has already said that he intends to invite dignitaries from across the globe for the opening ceremony.
In a statement, a senior museum official said Sunday’s blast did not damage their museum or any of its artifacts.
The December attack targeting a tourist bus took place on another road about three miles from the pyramids. Soon after, the Egyptian authorities said that they had killed 40 people in reprisal for the assault in what they described as a series of raids across the country.
Human rights groups later cast doubt on the official account of that operation, saying that some of those killed were already in the custody of the security forces and may have been victims of extrajudicial executions.
Follow Declan Walsh on Twitter: @declanwalsh .
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Egypt: bomb attack on tourist bus near Giza pyramids kills at least four people
Egyptian officials say roadside bomb exploded near bus carrying Vietnamese tourists
At least four people have been killed and another 10 injured after a roadside bomb exploded near a bus carrying Vietnamese tourists close to the pyramids in Giza.
Three of the dead were Vietnamese and one was an Egyptian tour guide.
An Egyptian security source told the Guardian the bus had 16 people onboard and an IED exploded as it approached. Reuters reported that the device was hidden near a wall on Marioutiya Street on the Cairo outskirts.
Police and ambulances attended the scene, and the injured were transferred to nearby hospitals.
The tourists were heading to a show at the pyramids, which they had visited earlier in the day, said Lan Le, 41, who was onboard the bus but unhurt.
“We were going to the sound and light show and then suddenly we heard a bomb. It was terrible, people screaming,” she told Reuters, speaking at Al-Haram hospital. “I don’t remember anything after.”
Ahmed Samy, a tuk-tuk driver, said he saw the bus after the blast and locals and drivers were helping the injured to get out. “One of the passengers was dead and was covered in blood,” he said.
The Egyptian prime minister, Mostafa Madbouly, visited the injured at Al-Haram hospital. He told reporters that the bus had not followed the path it was supposed to take, where it would have been secured by the police.
Reuters said that the Egyptian driver of the bus later told local media he had not deviated from the route.
Egyptian prosecutors said they had launched an urgent investigation “to arrest the perpetrators”.
Tourism has been one of the main drivers of Egypt’s struggling economy, contributing around 375bn Egyptian pounds (£16bn), or 11% of GDP, in 2017, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council.
The country has intensified efforts to woo tourists after a sharp decline in numbers following the political turmoil linked to the 2011 revolution . Tourism to Egypt’s Red Sea resorts, which had been spared the worst of the political upheaval, also fell dramatically following an explosion onboard a Russian plane over the Sinai peninsula on 31 October from Sharm el-Sheikh international airport . The explosion claimed the lives of all 217 passengers and seven crew members.
Targeted campaigns promoting tourism have been going hand in hand with huge state-sponsored international conferences designed to promote youth empowerment, technology and foreign investment.
No militant group has yet claimed responsibility for Friday’s attack. The most active group has been Islamic State, which has been operating mainly in North Sinai. An Isis-linked group claimed responsibility for the explosion on the Russian plane.
Isis also claimed responsibility for a January 2016 attack in Hurghada where two militants entered a hotel and stabbed three tourists. The Swede and two Austrians survived.
In February 2014, the militant group Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis, which later pledged allegiance to Isis, claimed a bomb attack that ripped through a tourist bus on the Egyptian side of the Taba border crossing with Israel, killing four and injuring about 30 passengers.
Before the Russian plane explosion, the deadliest attack to target tourists took place in Luxor in 1997 when more than 60 people, the vast majority foreign visitors, were murdered by militants armed with guns and knives.
- Middle East and north Africa
Egypt police 'kill 40 militants' in raids after tourist bus blast
- Published 29 December 2018
Police in Egypt have killed dozens of militants during security raids on their hideouts, the interior ministry has said.
The raids killed "40 terrorists" in Giza and North Sinai on Saturday morning, according to a statement from the ministry.
It said the militants were planning a series of attacks on tourist sites, churches and military personnel.
The raids followed Friday's roadside bomb attack on a tour bus in Giza .
No group has yet said it was behind the blast, which killed three Vietnamese tourists and an Egyptian tour guide, but Islamist militants have targeted tourists in Egypt in the past.
- What you need to know about Egypt
Police killed 30 militants during two early morning raids in Giza, while the remaining 10 were killed in El-Arish, the capital of North Sinai province, the interior ministry said.
"A group of terrorists were planning to carry out a series of aggressive attacks targeting state institutions, particularly economic ones, as well as tourism... and Christian places of worship," the ministry statement said.
It added that police had seized bomb-making materials, ammunition and a large number of weapons during the raids.
Security is already tight in Egypt, with the tourist season at its height and the country's main Christian minority, the Copts, preparing to celebrate Orthodox Christmas on 7 January.
What do we know of Friday's attack?
The roadside bomb went off at about 18:15 (16:45 GMT) on Maryoutiya Street in Giza's Haram district as the bus carrying 14 Vietnamese tourists was passing, according to official accounts.
Four people were killed and eleven others were injured in the incident, which is the first affecting foreign tourists in Egypt in more than a year.
Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly has said the bus deviated from its planned route without alerting security forces, although the driver has denied this.
How has tourism fared in Egypt in recent years?
Tourism is a mainstay of Egypt's economy.
It peaked in 2010, when the country saw more than 14 million visitors, but fell sharply after the turmoil of the Arab Spring the following year.
Worse was to come after militants bombed a Russian passenger jet in 2015 as it left Sharm el Sheikh, killing 224 people.
The following year just 5.3 million tourists visited, according to the World Bank.
However, the sector has since recovered and 8.3 million people visited in 2017, the Financial Times reports.
Deadly blast hits tour bus in Egypt
Egypt country profile
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Two egyptian tourism police killed in rare attack near pyramids.
CAIRO (Reuters) - Gunmen on a motorcycle shot dead two members of Egypt's tourism and antiquities police force on a road near the Giza pyramids on Wednesday, security sources said, in a rare attack near a tourist site. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but Islamist militants bent on toppling the Cairo government have in the past killed hundreds of police and soldiers, usually at checkpoints and barracks or police stations. Attacks have increased since then army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi led the overthrow of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi after mass protests in 2013 against his troubled year in office. A shift towards attacks on softer tourist and economic targets could undermine Egypt's efforts to win back foreign tourists scared away by political and economic turmoil since a 2011 uprising which ousted veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak. Tourism is one of the top sources of income and foreign currency earnings for the Arab world's most populous country. The security sources said Wednesday's incident happened about 30 metres (yards) from a security checkpoint leading to the tourist site on the western outskirts of Cairo. State news agency MENA confirmed that the policemen had been killed in the Haram area of Giza province.
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Egypt kills 40 'terrorists' after tourist bus attack
Egyptian officials did not confirm whether the raids were connected to Friday's attack on a Vietnamese tourist bus near Giza pyramids that killed four people. Islamist violence has plagued the country since 2011.
Egypt's Interior Ministry said Saturday that the country's security forces killed 40 "terrorists" in three separate but simultaneous raids in North Sinai and Giza areas.
The raids came a day after a roadside bomb near Giza pyramids killed three Vietnamese tourists and their guide.
According to the ministry, 40 militants were killed in "synchronized security strikes at three terrorist hideouts."
Two raids in Giza killed 30 people, while the remaining were killed in the restive North Sinai area, the ministry said in a statement, adding that police seized large quantities of weapons and firearms in the swoops.
The "terrorist elements" were planning to carry out a series of attacks on state institutions, tourism facilities and churches across the country, state television said Saturday.
Egypt has battled Islamic militants for years in the Sinai Peninsula in an insurgency that has occasionally spilled over to the mainland, hitting minority Christians or tourists. However, the Friday assault was the first attack to target foreign tourists in almost two years.
The country's tourism industry is slowly recovering from years of political turmoil and violence that followed the 2011 Arab Spring uprising that toppled former leader Hosni Mubarak .
shs/ng (Reuters, dpa, AFP)
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Terror Attack at the Giza Pyramids Injures 16
- Read Later
In Egypt, security sources have announced a suspected bomb attack on a tourist bus near the world-famous Giza pyramids . Initial reports indicate that 16 people were hurt in the attack, but that their injuries are believed to be relatively minor. If this is confirmed to be a terrorist bombing then it would be the latest in a long string of incidents, that are aimed at disrupting Egypt’s vital tourism sector.
It is believed that what was an improvised explosive device detonated as a bus filled with tourists was waiting in traffic. The explosion occurred at a wall with a fence and it strew debris over the road. This appears to have been a roadside bomb attack, a well-known terrorist tactic in the Middle East.
16 tourists have been injured in the attack. (Image: Yosef Yisrael / Twitter )
Possible Giza bomb attack
The Independent quotes a witness to the attack, Mohamed el-Mandouh, as stating that, “he heard a ‘very loud explosion’ while sitting in traffic nearby.” According to the BBC , ‘images showing a damaged bus with its windows blown out and what looked to be injured tourists, some covered in blood, have been circulated on social media’. It is believed that at least sixteen people were injured in the bomb blast, but there are no reports of any fatalities. First reports indicate that the majority of the wounded only suffered relatively minor injuries. According to the Independent , the injured ‘included South African nationals.’
The roadside device exploded near to the new Grand Egyptian Museum. (Image: Yosef Yisrael / Twitter )
Attack near the pyramids of Giza
The suspected terrorist attack occurred near the Grand Egyptian Museum, which is located some one and a half miles (2km) away from the pyramids in Giza. RT news reports that ‘the museum, still under construction, is set to be the largest archaeological museum in the world.’ It is due to open in 2020. Many priceless artifacts and treasures are going to be placed on display here, including some from the tomb of Tutankhamun.
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Grand Egyptian Museum, Giza, Egypt. ( CC BY-SA 4.0 )
It appears that the tourist bus had or was going to visit the pyramids at Giza. This is a necropolis with several famous, pyramids and is the site of the Great Sphinx. It is located some 8 miles or 12 km south of Cairo and is a very popular tourist site, visited by millions of people every year.
If this is confirmed to have been a terrorist attack it will have been the second in recent months. According to the BBC, ‘three Vietnamese tourists and a local tour guide were killed after a roadside bomb hit their bus’, in December 2018. Egypt has a long history of terrorists targeting foreign visitors.
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The bomb device was activated as a bus passed the location, injuring 16 people. (Image: Yosef Yisrael / Twitter )
History of terrorists attacking tourists
Since the 1990s Islamic fundamentalist militants have launched often devastating attacks on foreign visitors. In 1997, some 62 people mostly international tourists were killed by attackers at Luxor. Since the Arab Spring in 2011 and the subsequent imposition of military rule, there has been an upsurge in terrorist attacks in the country. In 2015 some 224 people were killed when a Russian jet was downed by a bomb. The majority of those who died were holidaymakers.
The attacks on tourists are all designed to do harm to Egypt’s economy. Tourism is the main source of foreign currency for the country and hundreds of thousands of jobs depend on the sector. The industry suffered a severe downturn after the Arab Spring, and this led to an economic recession in the country. However, in recent years the sector has begun to slowly recover.
Egypt’s attraction for foreigners is mainly its historic sites such as the pyramids at Giza. If these are considered to be dangerous this could impact negatively on the Egyptian tourism sector. The Egyptian government already has a very significant security presence at popular visitor attractions. It will no doubt step up its efforts to minimize the terrorist threat at Giza and other sites.
Top image: Khafra and Cheops pyramids in Giza, Egypt Source: fadamson / Adobe Stock
By Ed Whelan
My name is Edward Whelan and I graduated with a PhD in history in 2008. Between 2010-2012 I worked in the Limerick City Archives. I have written a book and several peer reviewed journal articles. At present I am a... Read More
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Timeline: Tourist attacks in Egypt
Following is a timeline of attacks on foreigners since 1992.
Tourists have been attacked in Egypt before and in the latest incident on Monday, at least 19 people, including 12 foreigners, have been abducted in the country’s south.
Here is a chronology of some of the most significant incidents of violence involving foreigners since the early 1990s:
21 October 1992 : A British woman is killed and two British men wounded in an attack near Dairut in the south. The woman is the first foreigner to die in such an attack.
26 February 1993 : Bomb in crowded coffee shop in central Cairo kills a Turk, a Swede and an Egyptian and wounds 20 others.
8 June 1993 : Blast near tour bus on Pyramids Road in Cairo kills two Egyptians and wounds 22 others, including five Britons.
27 October 1993 : A man described as a mentally disturbed musician shoots dead two US businessmen, a French jurist and an Italian at a luxury Cairo hotel.
4 March 1994 : Armed men fire at a Nile cruiser in southern Egypt, wounding a German woman, who died after being flown back to her country.
26 August 1994 : A Spanish boy is killed in an attack on a tourist bus in southern Egypt.
27 September 1994 : A German is killed and another wounded in an attack on the Red Sea resort of Hurghada. Two Egyptians were also killed. Another German man died of his wounds after returning to his country.
23 October 1994 : A British tourist is killed and three others wounded in an attack on a minibus.
18 April 1996 : Eighteen Greek tourists are killed in an attack after being “mistaken for Israelis” near the Pyramids.
18 September 1997 : Nine German tourists and their Egyptian bus driver are killed in a shooting and firebomb attack outside the Egyptian Museum in Cairo’s Tahrir Square. 17 November 1997 : Attackers kill 58 tourists and four Egyptians at an ancient temple near the southern town of Luxor. Six of the attackers and three policemen also die in the violence.
7 October 2004 : A series of bombings at the Taba Hilton hotel on Egypt’s border with Israel, and two beaches further south, kill 34 people.
7 April 2005 : A suicide bomb attack in a bazaar in Old Cairo kills a US citizen, a French man and a woman.
30 April 2005 : A suicide attack wounds seven people including four foreigners – two Israelis, an Italian and a Swede – near the Egyptian Museum.
23 July 2005 : Car bombs hit Red Sea resort of Sharm al-Shaikh, devastating an upmarket hotel. The government put the toll at 64, but hospitals reported 88 killed.
24 April 2006 : At least 22 people are killed and 150 wounded in three blasts in the Red Sea resort of Dahab.
22 September 2008 : Nineteen people, including 12 foreigners, are abducted in the country’s south.
Tourists killed when roadside bomb explodes near giza pyramids, social links for yaron steinbuch.
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Two Vietnamese tourists and a tour guide were killed, and 11 others wounded, when a roadside bomb exploded near their bus as it traveled near the Giza pyramids outside Cairo, according to reports.
The improvised explosive device detonated about 6:15 p.m. local time as the bus, carrying 14 people, passed though the Marioutiyah area in Egypt’s Haram district near the pyramids.
Ten Vietnamese tourists and the Egyptian driver were wounded when the device, hidden near a wall, exploded, officials said.
Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, who visited the injured at Al-Haram hospital, said the bus had not followed the path it was supposed to take, where it would have been secured by police.
Prosecutors said they had launched an investigation “to arrest the perpetrators.” No militant group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.
Ahmed Samy, who drives a three-wheeled taxi, said he saw the mangled bus after the blast as people rushed to help the injured get out.
“One of the passengers was dead and was covered in blood,” he said, the UK’s Guardian reported .
Egypt has battled Islamic extremists for years in the Sinai Peninsula in an insurgency that has spilled over to the mainland at times, hitting minority Christians or tourists.
But Friday’s attack is the first to target foreign tourists in almost two years.
It occurred as Egypt’s vital tourism industry is showing signs of recovery after years because of the political turmoil and violence that followed a 2011 uprising that toppled former leader Hosni Mubarak.
The attack will likely prompt officials to tighten security around churches and related facilities before New Year’s Eve celebrations and next month’s Christmas celebrations of the Coptic Orthodox Church, the dominant denomination among Egypt’s roughly 10 million Christians.
In the past two years, militant attacks against Christians in Egypt — usually targeting churches or buses carrying pilgrims to remote desert monasteries — have killed more than 100 people.
In July 2017, two German tourists were fatally stabbed by a suspected jihadist at the Egyptian Red Sea beach resort of Hurghada.
In 2015, ISIS claimed responsibility for a blast that downed a Russian airliner and killed all 224 people aboard shortly after it took off from the Egyptian holiday resort of Sharm El Sheikh.
The pyramids are one of the world’s major tourist attractions, drawing almost 15 million visitors every year.
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A policeman in Egypt killed 2 Israelis and 1 Egyptian at a tourist site in Alexandria
Egyptian authorities say a policeman opened fire on Israeli tourists in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, killing at least two Israelis and one Egyptian
CAIRO -- An Egyptian policeman opened fire Sunday on Israeli tourists in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, killing at least two Israelis and one Egyptian, Israeli and Egyptian authorities said.
A statement from Egypt's Interior Ministry said that another person was wounded in the attack at the Pompey’s Pillar site in Alexandria. It provided no further details.
Israel's Foreign Ministry identified the wounded person as an Israeli who suffered moderate injuries. The ministry said in a statement that Israeli authorities were working with the Egyptian government to bring the Israelis home.
Extra News television channel, which has close ties to Egyptian security agencies, reported that the suspected assailant was detained. The dead Egyptian was a tour guide, according to media outlets.
Security forces quickly cordoned off the site of the attack. Graphic footage posted on social media showed two people lying motionless on the ground. Another was seen being helped by a group of men. One woman was heard shouting for an ambulance.
The attack triggered mixed reactions from social media users. Some lauded the attack in Alexandria while others condemned the killing of civilians visiting Egypt.
Writing on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter , renowned Egyptian writer and TV host Ibrahim Issa called the attack a “terrorist crime,” adding that, “any attempt to justify it is a crime against humanity and the nation.”
Amr Magdi, researcher with Human Rights Watch, condemned the attack, saying on X: “No justification whatsoever for intentionally targeting Israeli civilians in #Egypt, Gaza or anywhere else.”
In a message to Americans in Egypt, the U.S. embassy in Cairo urged them to take precautions as the attack could be related to the clashes between Israel and Palestinian militants.
Egypt was the first Arab country to make peace with Israel in the 1970s and has long served as a mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But anti-Israeli sentiment runs high in the country, especially during bouts of violence between Israel and the Palestinians.
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Scientists reveal hidden corridor in Great Pyramid of Giza
CAIRO, March 2 (Reuters) - (This March. 2 story has been corrected to delete height comparison in paragraph 4)
A hidden corridor nine metres (30 feet) long has been discovered close to the main entrance of the 4,500-year-old Great Pyramid of Giza, and this could lead to further findings, Egyptian antiquities officials said on Thursday.
The discovery within the pyramid, the last of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still standing, was made under the Scan Pyramids project that since 2015 has been using non-invasive technology including infrared thermography, 3D simulations and cosmic-ray imaging to peer inside the structure.
An article published in the journal Nature on Thursday said the discovery could contribute to knowledge about the construction of the pyramid and the purpose of a gabled limestone structure that sits in front of the corridor.
The Great Pyramid was constructed as a monumental tomb around 2560 BC during the reign of the Pharaoh Khufu, or Cheops, to a height of 146 metres (479 feet). With much of its white limestone casing removed, it now stands at 139 metres.
[1/4] A hidden corridor inside the Great Pyramid of Giza that was discovered by researches from the the Scan Pyramids project by the Egyptian Tourism Ministry of Antiquities is seen in Giza, Egypt March 2, 2023. The Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities/Handout via REUTERS Acquire Licensing Rights
The unfinished corridor was likely created to redistribute the pyramid's weight around either the main entrance now used by tourists, almost seven metres away, or around another as yet undiscovered chamber or space, said Mostafa Waziri, head of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities.
"We're going to continue our scanning so we will see what we can do ... to figure out what we can find out beneath it, or just by the end of this corridor," he told reporters after a press conference in front of the pyramid.
Five rooms atop the king's burial chamber in another part of the pyramid are also thought to have been built to redistribute the weight of the massive structure. It was possible the pharaoh had more than one burial chamber, Waziri added.
Scientists detected the corridor through cosmic-ray muon radiography, before retrieving images of it by feeding a 6mm-thick endoscope from Japan through a tiny joint in the pyramid's stones.
In 2017, Scan Pyramids researchers announced the discovery of a void at least 30 metres long inside the Great Pyramid, the first major inner structure found since the 19th century.
Reporting by Aidan Lewis; editing by Mark Heinrich
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
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Egypt Bus Attack: Deaths Reported After Bomb Blast Strikes Tourist Bus Near Giza Pyramids
A bomb has reportedly targeted a tourist bus near the popular Great Pyramids landmark in the Egyptian city of Giza, leaving at least two people dead.
Egyptian security officials said the blast was caused by a roadside bomb that went off not far from the only surviving site out of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
"On this day, the 28th, at around 6:15 p.m., an improvised explosive device was hidden next to a wall at Al-Marioutiya Street in Giza during the passage of a tourism bus carrying 14 tourists of Vietnamese nationality, resulting in the death of two and injuring of 10, including the driver of the bus and a tourism company representative who were Egyptian nationality," the Egyptian Interior Ministry said in a statement.
"Security services immediately arrived at the scene of the incident, and examinations are being completed," it added.
Various local outlets shared photos online of what appeared to be a badly damaged bus bearing the logo of the Trogils Travel company on the side.
الصور الأولى لحافلة الركاب السياحية التي استهدفتها عبوة ناسفة في مصر pic.twitter.com/VdQ9DVFh0M — صحيفة الشرق - قطر (@alsharq_portal) December 28, 2018
Egypt has been plagued in recent years by Islamist insurgencies, especially by the Islamic State militant group (ISIS), which claims an area of influence within the Sinai Peninsula. ISIS claimed responsibility for the bombing of Russian Metrojet Flight 9268, killing 224 people in October 2015. Before the rise of ISIS, other groups, such as Al-Jama'a al-Islamiya targeted tourists, most notably in the 1997 Luxor massacre that killed 62 people at an archaeological site at Deir el-Bahari.
Sporadic bombings claimed by ISIS have also especially targeted Egypt's Coptic Christian minority, killing dozens.
Egyptian unrest has worsened since the 2011 revolution that ousted longtime leader Hosni Mubarak. His successor, Mohammed Morsi of the long-restricted Muslim Brotherhood, was himself overturned in a second uprising backed by the military in 2013, paving the way for current Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi to take power in another election.
The State Department has classified Egypt as a level two travel risk, asking citizens to "Exercise Increased Caution" and explicitly tells travelers to avoid "The Sinai Peninsula (with the exception of travel to Sharm El-Sheikh by air)" and "The Western Desert due to terrorism," as well as "Egyptian border areas due to military zones."
"Terrorist groups continue plotting attacks in Egypt. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, and local government facilities. There is a possibility of terrorist attacks in urban areas, despite the heavy security presence. Terrorists have targeted religious sites, to include mosques, churches, monasteries, and buses traveling to these locations," the U.S. advisory reads.
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About the writer
Based in his hometown of Staten Island, New York City, Tom O'Connor is an award-winning Senior Writer of Foreign Policy and Deputy Editor of National Security and Foreign Policy at Newsweek, where he specializes in covering the Middle East, North Korea, China, Russia and other areas of international affairs, relations and conflict.
He has previously written for International Business Times, the New York Post, the Daily Star (Lebanon) and Staten Island Advance. His works have been cited in more than 1,600 academic papers, government reports, books, news articles and other forms of research and media from across the globe. He has contributed analysis to a number of international outlets and has participated in Track II diplomacy related to the Middle East as well as in fellowships at The Korea Society and Foreign Press Center Japan.
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