Four near-simultaneous explosions ripped through three subway stations and outside a courthouse in Cairo during rush hour Wednesday morning, injuring several.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombings, but one government spokesman quickly blamed the Muslim Brotherhood.
Egyptian security forces inspect damages after an explosion hit a subway station in Shubra el-Khemia northern Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, June 25, 2014. Four minor explosions struck subway stations in Cairo on Wednesday, wounding two people and causing widespread panic among morning commuters, officials said. (AP Photo/Magdy Ebrahim, El Shorouk Newspaper)
Interior Ministry spokesman Hani Abdel-Latif said the attacks were a "desperate attempt by the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist organization to prove they still exist."
Authorities quickly accused the Muslim Brotherhood of orchestrating the attacks, describing them as "desperate attempts" to disrupt the "prevailing state of stability." The group, to which the ousted President Mohammed Morsi belonged, has denied involvement in any violence. But even some Islamists warn that young Brotherhood supporters could turn to attacks under pressure of a fierce crackdown on the group for nearly a year.
The Muslim Brotherhood did not immediately respond to the allegation.
The interior ministry spokesman said the homemade devices had exploded in three separate subway stations – one hidden in a garbage can — and a fourth was planted under a car outside the courthouse. One of those injured was said to have been carrying an explosive in his backpack.
Officials described the explosive devices as “primitive,” Reuters reported.
Photos from the scene showed security personnel using bomb-sniffing dogs to examine the subway stations for additional explosives.
Officials said there were other devices at the courthouse and at a fourth subway station which did not detonate.
Egypt has faced continuing violence since the ouster of Muslim Brotherhood-aligned Morsi. The interim government following Morsi’s rule branded the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group. There have been repeated attacks in the Sinai Peninsula by Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, designated as a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department.
Egypt's newly elected president, Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, is a staunch opponent of the Brotherhood and was one of the key figures behind Morsi's ouster following huge demonstrations calling for his resignation last summer.