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Three Egyptian policemen, four militants killed in prison break attempt

Three Egyptian policemen were killed while preventing four Islamist militants on death row fleeing a Cairo prison on Wednesday, the interior ministry said.

CAIRO, Sept 23 (Reuters) - Three Egyptian policemen were killed while preventing four Islamist militants on death row fleeing a Cairo prison on Wednesday, the interior ministry said.

All four militants were killed in the failed attempt to escape from Tora prison, it added in a statement.

Three of the prisoners named in the statement were convicted in 2018 with establishing and joining a militant group called Ansar al-Sharia and killing at least 10 policemen in a series of attacks between August 2013 and May 2014.

The fourth was convicted in 2018 of killing a Christian doctor, local newspapers said.

The interior ministry statement did not give further details.

Ansar al-Sharia announced its formation in Egypt in July 2013, saying the army's ousting of Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in the same month was a declaration of war on its faith and threatening to use violence to impose Islamic law.

(Reporting by Haitham Ahmed and Mahmoud Mourad; Editing by Alex Richardson)

((mahmoud.mourad@thomsonreuters.com))

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