Roundup: Egypt police kill 8 Muslim Brotherhood loyalists for attack plan ahead of Christmas

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The killed and arrested belong to the Hasm Movement, an affiliate to the Muslim Brotherhood which has been classified as a terrorist group by the Egyptian government, the ministry said in a statement.

"Four Hasm members were arrested within the framework of the ministry's strategic plan to maintain national interests and foil antagonistic plans of the Muslim Brotherhood which seek to harm national security," the statement said.

The terrorists managed to flee in two cars on Giza-Wahat road, but checkpoints were erected to arrest them, according to the ministry.

Security forces detected one of the group's members in Giza's Mounib area while heading on his bike to target security forces of one of the vital facilities.

CAIRO, Dec. 20 (Xinhua) -- The Interior Ministry of Egypt announced on Thursday that eight Muslim Brotherhood loyalists were killed and four others were arrested.

The forces killed him on the spot. He also had a fake ID, a pistol and a large amount of bullets.

Machine guns, ammunition, materials used in making explosive devices and remote-controlled mini drones were seized there.

"Four terrorists were also arrested, while raiding an apartment in al-Salam area which the terrorists hired," the ministry said.

The country has been suffering a wave of terrorist attacks that killed hundreds of policemen and soldiers following the military removal of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July 2013 in response to mass protests against his one-year rule and his now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.

According to the ministry, after tracking down the rest of the group's members, one of their strongholds was found in Cairo's al-Salam area.

Most of the attacks were claimed by the Wilayat Sinai, a Sinai-based group affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) regional terrorist organization.

Terror attacks had been centered in restive North Sinai before spreading to several provinces including the capital Cairo and starting to target the Coptic minority by church bombings.

They exchanged fire with security forces and six terrorists were killed.

As the forces approached to seize him, he opened fire at them, the ministry said, adding that the man, who had a fake ID and a machine gun, was killed on the spot.

"A Muslim Brotherhood fugitive Ibrahim Reda went there frequently and when security forces attempted to arrest him, he opened fire at them," the ministry said.

The Interior Ministry said the national security department received a tip that a group of Hasm movement were ordered by Muslim Brotherhood leaderships abroad to carry out a series of attacks against vital targets in coincidence with Christmas celebrations.