AFP — Gunmen Friday killed an Egyptian policeman who was on a security team guarding the home of a judge in the jailbreak trial of ousted president Mohamed Morsi, security officials said.
Attacks on the security forces have surged since the army ousted the Islamist Morsi last July, and as the military-installed authorities press a deadly crackdown on his supporters.
Sergeant Abdallah Metwally was shot dead as he rode his motorbike across a bridge over the Nile in the city of Mansoura north of Cairo.
The attack on Metwally, who was wearing plain clothes, was carried out assailants who were also on a motorbike, at about 7:30 am (0530 GMT), Brigadier General El-Saeed Omara of Mansoura police told AFP.
His killing comes with an appeal court on Saturday set to examine a defence request to appoint a new panel of judges in Morsi’s jailbreak trial.
Morsi and 130 other defendants including Palestinian and Lebanese militants are charged with organising jailbreaks and attacking police stations during the 2011 revolt against strongman Hosni Mubarak.
The case, one of three already opened against Morsi, is part of a relentless government crackdown targeting him and his Muslim Brotherhood movement since his ouster.
Mansoura, in the Nile Delta, was the site of a deadly car bombing in December when the city’s police headquarters was attacked, killing 15 people, mostly policeman.
That bombing was the deadliest since Morsi’s overthrow outside the Sinai Peninsula bordering Israel and Gaza, where militants have killed scores of police and soldiers.
Since January, at least 27 policemen have been killed outside the peninsula, mostly in shootings.