Shopkeeper Mohamed Ali said he saw a man park a vehicle that exploded after he stepped away from it.
Deadly bomb attacks on security headquarters in Cairo and the northern city of al-Mansoura in January 2014 and December 2013 were claimed by a jihadist group which has since pledged allegiance to the Islamic State extremist militia and now calls itself Sinai Province.
No-one has claimed responsibility but militants in Sinai sympathetic to ISIL, which controls parts of Iraq and Syria and has a presence in Egypt, have previously been behind attacks on security forces. The group says the attack was carried out to avenge the execution of six defendants in the Arab Sharkas case in May 2015.
The Islamic State franchise Sinai Peninsula has claimed responsibility for the bombing of a Cairo courthouse as the Egyptian government continues to grapple with an insurgency that has targeted the legal system, police, and military.
Two years of violence in a militant campaign has left hundreds dead in Egypt, mainly police and soldiers, and a string of attacks in the capital have undermined President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi’s claim to bring order to the country.
Video broadcast by CBC, an Egyptian news channel, showed the bare white security building, its windows blown out and its face shorn off with rubble in the street.
Authorities enforced tight security in the scene of the bomb explosion in Cairo’s Shubra district.
There were no immediate reports of deaths from the explosion, but a ministry statement said that six police officers were hurt.
The lads have been sentenced by a army courtroom in proceedings closely criticized by human rights organizations, a few of whom identified that three of the defendants have been already in detention once they allegedly carried out assaults.
In June, a powerful vehicle bomb exploded and killed Egypt’s top prosecutor, Hisham Barakat, in the heart of Cairo.
In May, Egypt executed six members of Sinai Province for attacking soldiers near Cairo in 2014.
A security source told local Egyptian daily al-Masry al-Youm that 20 people had been injured in the explosion, which occurred around 2 a.m. local time.
The bombing killed one person and destroyed part of the Italian Consulate, the group’s first attack on a foreign diplomatic mission.