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5 policemen shot dead by militants in Egypt

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-01-23 16:40

CAIRO - At least five policemen were shot dead and two others injured early Thursday morning in an armed attack on a checkpoint in Egypt's Beni Sweif governorate south of the capital Cairo, official Al-Ahram Online reported.

"A group of militants riding two motorbikes shot heavily at the checkpoint and exchanged fire with the security men," Al-Ahram quoted Beni Sweif's police chief as saying.

Armed attacks on security premises mounted following the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi by the military last July.

Supporters of Morsi have staged numerous protests since his deposition, denouncing the army's move as "a coup" and calling for his reinstatement.

Beni Sweif's attack came two days before the third anniversary of the January 25 2011 protest that toppled ex-president Hosni Mubarak.

Anti-government protests are expected to be held by Morsi's loyalists and revolutionary youth on the day, while supporters of the government and the military are planning to stage mass celebrations.

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