Update: IS assume responsibility for attack on Egyptian churches
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The group calling itself Islamic State said it was behind the two attacks carried out on churches in Egypt earlier today. More than 36 persons lost their lives in the explosions. The first explosion occurred this morning in the town of Tanta, leaving 21 dead and some 50 others injured, and the second explosion occurred in the afternoon in a church in Alexandria, leaving 13 dead and 66 injured. In both cases the attacks were carried out in Christian Coptic churches, which were celebrating Palm Sunday.
The attacks had been planned to have a devastating effect, as they were made at a time when the faithful were gathered together to celebrate this feast.
Although it is not yet known how the explosions were carried out, the Governor of the Province where the first attack was carried out, Ahmad Deif, said it was either through a bomb inside the church or by a suicide bomber.
More security than usual is evident on the streets of Egypt today, with the possibility of attacks having been anticipated on the day of this Christian feast. Police are now conducting searches of the areas, to check for more explosives.