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Egyptian Arrested Outside U.S. Embassy in Cairo After Backpack Ignites

An Egyptian riot policeman stands guard on top of a vehicle protesters during a demonstration against a controversial deal to hand two islands in the Red Sea to Saudi Arabia on April 15, 2016 outside the Journalists' Syndicate in central Cairo. Outside the Journalists' Syndicate in central Cairo, about 200 …
MOHAMED EL-SHAHED/AFP/Getty

A 24-year-old Egyptian named Abdullah Ayman Abdel-Sameea was arrested outside the U.S. Embassy in Cairo on Tuesday after his backpack burst into flames. Authorities described the incident as a botched terrorist attack that fortunately did not harm anyone.

According to the Times of Israel, Egyptian authorities found a bottle of flammable chemicals in Abdel-Sameea’s backpack. The Egyptian Interior Ministry said the suspect has an “extremist” ideology and was planning to use the chemical in a “hostile” act.

The Israeli newspaper posted a video clip of Abdel-Sameea’s arrest, in which his pants and shoes were removed before he was led away by police:

CBS News described another, unconfirmed video clip that showed a man “walking toward the embassy perimeter carrying a backpack and something in his hand before he disappears in a large puff of smoke.”

The Associated Press reported the incident occurred outside the heavy blast walls of the U.S. embassy, which is located next to the equally well-defended British embassy in the Garden City neighborhood of Cairo.

The U.S. Embassy indicated on social media it was aware of the incident and advised American citizens to avoid the area. About an hour later, the embassy said police investigations were concluded and it was resuming normal operations.

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