Videos show Egypt’s church gunman calmly walking away

Video clips circulating on social media on Saturday show the gunman who opened fire outside an Egyptian church and a nearby store owned by a Copt in an attack that killed at least nine people walking armed and unchallenged on a residential street for nearly 10 minutes.

The gunman, the videos show, stops only occasionally to shoot at his pursuers before he is himself shot.

The videos making the rounds Saturday drew a flood of critical comments about the police's handling of the shooting.

The Interior Ministry, which oversees the police, said the gunman was wounded and arrested, but the Health Ministry said he was shot dead. The discrepancy could not be immediately reconciled.

It was not clear whether the gunman acted alone when he opened fire on the church, located in the Egyptian capital's southern suburb of Helwan, and the nearby store.

The official MENA news agency quoted a top but anonymous security official as saying the gunman was one of two attackers.

The ISIS-run news agency, Aamaq, backed MENA's assertion, saying the attack was carried out by a “security detail,” suggesting more than one assailant, and said one fighter was killed.

Hundreds of grief-stricken mourners took part in funerals for the Christian victims of the attack late on Friday.

Most videos of Friday's gunman circulating on social media were shot from windows in high-rise apartment towers overlooking the street on which the church is located. The voices heard on the videos hurled insults at the gunman and expressed amazement at his calm.

Witness Mohammed Adel Hamza, who shot a 10-minute video of the gunman, said residents followed the gunman as he walked, taking cover behind trees and parked cars. “As soon as the gunman was shot and fell on the ground, they all started running toward him,” he said.

Interestingly, Hamza's video and similar footage showed the gunman oblivious to cars, motorbikes and, in some cases, pedestrians walking past him at close proximity. At one point, he appears to have had an exchange with a man riding a motorbike, but does not attempt to commandeer it for his getaway. “It was all a weird scene,” said Hamza.

On Saturday, the ISIS-run Aamaq news agency released a video of the militant's pre-attack statement.

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Last Update: 06:52 KSA 09:52 - GMT 06:52
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