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Egypt: Trial of Al Jazeera journalists adjourned for second time

Journalists Baher Mohamed, left, and Mohamed Fadel Fahmy Credit: PA

A court in Egypt has postponed the verdict in the retrial of Al Jazeera television journalists who have been charged with aiding a "terrorist organisation" for the second time.

The verdict hearing has been postponed until 29th August.

Mohamed Fahmy, a naturalised Canadian who has given up his Egyptian citizenship, and Egyptian Baher Mohamed were released on bail in February after spending more than a year in custody.

Both men deny all charges.

A third Al Jazeera journalist, Australian Peter Greste, was deported in February.

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Egypt's Isis branch 'launches missile at naval ship'

Islamic State's Egypt branch, known as Sinai Province, has claimed to have carried out a rocket attack on an Egyptian naval vessel in the Mediterranean Sea.

The Egyptian military admited that a coastguard vessel had exchanged shots with militants off the coast of northern Sinai, an area bordering Israel and the Gaza Strip. The boat caught fire but the incident resulted in no casualties, the military said.

Pictures show damage from blast in Egypt

A security official and Egypt's state news agency MENA said a powerful explosion in Cairo occurred in front of the Italian consulate in the city centre.

A car bomb caused the blast, the security official said. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the explosion. The MENA report cited witnesses as saying the force of the explosion had caused massive destruction to the building.

A car bomb caused the blast, the security official said. Credit: Reuters
Pictures show damage from blast in Egypt. Credit: Reuters
A powerful explosion in Cairo occurred in front of the Italian consulate. Credit: Reuters

Huge blast rocks Italian consulate in central Cairo

A huge explosion has rocked central Cairo, a witness for the Reuters news agency has reported.

Local media say that blast happened outside the Italian consulate, and it is thought to have been a car bomb.

In recent months, Islamist militants seeking to topple the government have claimed responsibility for roadside bombs and suicide attacks across Egypt.

Wave of deadly attacks hit Egyptian security posts

Authorities in the Sinai Peninsula have been battling insurgents who support Islamic State. Credit: Reuters

At least 20 members of the Egyptian security forces have been killed in suspected militant attacks in the country, military officials have said.

A police station and five checkpoints were targeted in North Sinai, with a car bomb exploding at one military post.

An army spokesman said 22 of the attackers were killed during the assaults.

A Sinai-based insurgency has killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers since the Egyptian army toppled Islamist president Mohamed Mursi after mass protests against his rule in 2013.

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Egypt's Karnak temple 'targeted in suicide bomb attack'

A suicide bomber has blown himself up near a tourist site in the Egyptian city of Luxor, security sources and witnesses say.

Karnak Temple in Luxor is visited by tourists from around the world. Credit: Reuters

Three assailants were killed in the attack, which took place close to the ancient Karnak temple, one of Egypt's most popular tourist destinations.

Two gunmen were shot dead by police, but a third person managed to pass through a barrier leading to the site before blowing himself up.

Four Egyptians - including shop owners and police officers - were wounded in the attack.

No group immediately claimed responsibility.

US 'deeply concerned' at Mursi death sentence

The US government has expressed "deeply concern" about the death penalty handed to former Egyptian President, Mohamed Mursi.

Prosecutors are demanding execution of Mursi and more than 100 other defendants after a mass trial which has also been condemned by Amnesty International.

"We are deeply concerned by yet another mass death sentence handed down by an Egyptian court to more than 100 defendants, including former President Mursi," a State Department official said.

"We have consistently spoken out against the practice of mass trials and sentences, which are conducted in a manner that is inconsistent with Egypt's international obligations and the rule of law," the official added.

Muslim Brotherhood slam Morsi 'political sentence'

Muslim Brotherhood official Amr Darrag condemned an Egyptian court's decision to seek the death penalty for former president Mohamed Morsi and called on the international community to take action.

"This is a political verdict and represents a murder crime that is about to be committed, and it should be stopped by the international community," Darrag, co-founder of the dissolved Freedom and Justice Party, the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood, told Reuters in Istanbul.

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