One person killed in Cairo blast near Italian consulate

Building heavily damaged

A bomb exploded in front of the Italian consulate in Cairo on Saturday, killing one person, the health ministry and security officials said, raising the possibility that Islamist militants could open a new front against foreigners.

A security official told Reuters the blast was caused by a car bomb. State news agency MENA cited a senior security source as saying preliminary investigations indicated that a bomb was placed under a car near the consulate and remotely detonated.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the early morning blast, which Reuters witnesses said caused heavy damage to the consulate. It shook other buildings downtown and could be heard in several surrounding neighborhoods.

The identity of the person killed was not immediately clear. A health ministry spokesman said four civilians were wounded. Among the wounded were two policemen.

Italy’s Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni said there were no Italian victims in the blast. “Italy is not intimidated,” he said on Twitter.

Translation: "Bomb our Consulate to #cairo . There were no Italian victims . Close to the people affected and to the staff . Italy is not intimidated"

According to Reuters Islamist militants have carried out roadside bomb attacks and suicide bombings targeting members of the security forces and officials.