Egypt security forces thwart church bombing

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The man tried to enter the church in Mostorod district in Qaliubiya province with churchgoers but heightened security around the church prevented him from approaching, the officials said.

A militant wearing a suicide vest blew himself up 250 metres from a Coptic Christian church in Qalyubiyah, a governorate north of Cairo, killing himself but no one else according to eyewitnesses and state media.

Initial reports indicate that the attacker died on the scene and that there were no other deaths or injuries.

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State television made the announcement on Saturday in a broadcast but gave little details of the said attempted attack.

A string of bombings on Coptic churches in Cairo, Alexandria and the Nile Delta city of Tanta in 2016 and 2017 killed at least 80 people.

Christians in Egypt make up an estimated 10% of its roughly 96 million population.

Egyptian churches have consistently come under attack from militants.

Egypt has fought an insurgency led by Islamic State in the Sinai Peninsula that has killed hundreds of soldiers and policemen in recent years, but attacks in the country's mainland are less common.

The religious minority also struggles for greater representation in the Egyptian government.

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