December 29, 2017
A GUNMAN killed four people, including two police officers, while trying to storm a church in Cairo during morning prayers.
Cairo church shooting: At least four dead after gunman opens fire during morning prayers
The attacker opened fire outside the Church of Great Martyr Mina in al-Maasara district in Helwan, before being shot dead by police.
A further five security guards were injured in the shocking rampage, according to the state-run news agency MENA.
An unverified image published by local media showed a bearded man wearing a bulky ammunition vest sprawled on a street.
Reports suggest a second militant involved in the attack managed to escape.
Security forces have closed off the area around the Coptic church in the hunt for the second assailant.
Cairo's security chief Khaled Abdel Al and a number of security officials have headed to the scene of the attack.
Loud sirens were heard in central Cairo as the incident was first reported at around 11am local time (9am UK time).
Egypt's Coptic Christians make up about 10 percent of the country's 93 million people.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack, but ISIS terrorists have killed dozens of Christians across Egypt over the past year.
ISIS claimed a suicide bombing of a Cairo church in December 2016 followed by bombings of two churches north of the capital in April.
Egypt imposed a state of emergency following the church attacks and shootings.
A month later, gunmen linked to the group shot dead about 30 Christians south of Cairo as they travelled to a monastery.
ISIS has been waging a deadly insurgency based in the Sinai peninsula bordering Israel and the Gaza Strip, killing hundreds of policemen and soldiers.
The army has poured in thousands of troops backed with armour and jets in a bid to crush the jihadists, but attacks have continued.
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