Massive Explosion Reported Near Cairo Airport

Lester Mason
July 13, 2018

A huge explosion in a military-owned petrochemical plant near the Cairo International Airport took place late on Thursday due to hot weather, said Egypt's army spokesman. A number of local tweets poured in with users claiming to have heard a loud explosion followed by the sounds of ambulances.

Flights were briefly suspended while officials investigated the nature of the explosion, according to the Reuters news agency.

Images on social media showed a tremendous cloud of fire just near the airport. Egyptian Civil Aviation Minister Younis Al Masry, a former Egyptian Air Force officer who only took up the post in June 2018 during a cabinet shuffle, confirmed that the fuel dump has exploded, but offered no additional information. The minister also denied initial reports that air traffic at the airport was affected.

Various sources are claiming that the explosion was from a fuel tanker near the airport, indicating that the incident might be an accident rather than foul play. The country has been targeted by militant groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and the Islamic State (ISIS) in recent years, especially after the 2013 ousting of short-lived Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, who himself replaced longtime leader President Hosni Mubarak a year after the January 2011 revolution.

While flights have not been affected, some witnesses described the vehicle traffic in and out of the airport as a "nightmare".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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