Arrests made in Egypt over embassy plot

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Egyptian security forces have uncovered and caught an al-Qaeda-linked militant group that was on the verge of carrying out a suicide attack against a foreign embassy in the country, the interior minister said on Saturday.

In a press conference, Mohamed Ibrahim, did not mention which embassy had been targeted. He did, however, mention three suspected members of the cell that have been arrested, adding the militant group was not part of al-Qaeda, but linked to it.

“(Police) have delivered a successful blow against a terror cell plotting suicide bomb attacks,” including a plot to attack a Western embassy which was in its final stages, Ibrahim said.

The minister said that at least 10 kilos of chemicals, which could be used to make explosives, were confiscated along with a computer that had instructions of how to make a bomb on it.

The militants had been in touch with an al-Qaeda leader outside the country, identified as Kurdi Dawud al-Assadi who is "the head of al-Qaeda in some west Asian countries," Ibrahim said, according to AFP.

One of the suspects associated with Al-Qaeda members in Algeria and received training from the loose-knit militant organization in Pakistan and Iran, Ibrahim said.

“They were in electronic communication with Al-Qaeda in Pakistan,” he said, adding that they were also in touch with an Al-Qaeda facilitator on the Turkish border.

He did not specify which of the eight countries that Turkey shares a border with, although these include Iran, Iraq and Syria.

According to Ibrahim, Assadi had instructed the suspects to coordinate with two alleged militants before their capture last October after a firefight that killed a gunman in a Cairo apartment, AFP reported.

The suspects arrested in October, also alleged to have al-Qaeda links, are now on trial, AFP said.

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