16 hurt in Cairo tour-bus attack: Suspected Islamic militants open fire on Austrian tourists

CAIRO (Reuter) - Eight Austrians and eight Egyptians were wounded yesterday when attackers, probably Muslim militants, threw two bombs and fired shots at a tourist bus in Cairo. The Austrians were taken to hospital. Its director said two were seriously hurt: a 25-year-old man had a bullet in the brain and a 25-year-old woman had a leg wound. The Egyptians were injured by flying glass or by bullets.

The Interior Ministry said the attackers threw two explosive devices. One exploded inside the bus and the other outside. Police also found three spent cartridge cases from a 9mm pistol.

Witnesses said three young men lay in wait for the bus in a roadside cafe near the Amr ibn el-As mosque. 'I saw three men sitting in the cafe. A boy stood up holding something round in his hand which looked like a stone and threw it at the bus,' a man said. 'People in the cafe stood up to see what was happening. Suddenly one of the three, he had a revolver in his hand, told everybody 'Don't move]' and started shooting at the bus.

'Then the three ran away and people ran after them. But they couldn't catch them because they turned round and started shooting again.'

The Foreign Office advises that visitors to Egypt 'should be vigilant at all times, avoid the areas of Dairut and Assiut unless they have essential business there, and are reminded to behave and dress discreetly'.

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