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Egyptian Police Kill 2 Militants Linked to Deadly Attack on Coptic Christians

CAIRO: The Egyptian police killed two militants suspected of carrying out an attack that left seven Copts dead in the southern province of Minya, Egypt’s Interior Ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

“They were killed in a shoot-out after police pursued fugitive terrorist elements into the desert area west of Minya,” the statement said.

On Nov. 2, a bus carrying a number of Copts was attacked near the Monastery of St. Samuel the Confessor in Minya, leaving seven dead.

The Islamic State (IS) group claimed responsibility for the attack.

Security forces had previously killed 19 militants suspected of involvement in the attack.

Last year, almost in the same place, at least 28 Copts were killed in a similar attack.

The country has been suffering a wave of terrorist attacks that killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers following the military removal of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 in response to mass protests against his one-year rule and his now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.

Terror attacks had been centered in restive North Sinai before spreading to several other provinces including the capital Cairo and starting to target the Coptic minority by church bombings.

Most of the attacks were claimed by the Wilayat Sinai, a Sinai-based group affiliated with the IS regional terrorist organization.