20 people were killed and 47 injured when a car packed with explosives intended for a militant attack blew up outside Cairo’s main cancer hospital on Monday, the interior ministry said.
Officials initially said the explosion was caused when a car driving against the traffic collided with three other cars.
The front of the hospital suffered extensive damaged, with an entrance wrecked and rubble strewn over the pavement. Victims’ belongings were scattered among the debris.
The interior ministry said the car involved in the incident had been stolen a few months ago.
“The initial technical examination also showed that the car contained explosives, and the collision led to their detonation,” a ministry statement said.
“It is estimated that the car was being transported to a location for use in the execution of a terrorist operation,” the ministry added.
It said the Hasm militant group was responsible for rigging up the car.
Egypt accuses Hasm, which emerged in 2016 and has claimed several attacks, of being a wing of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood. Egypt’s oldest Islamist movement denies this and says it seeks change through peaceful means only.
The explosion caused a blaze that forced the partial evacuation of the National Cancer Institute, the health ministry said.