Egyptian police have killed a top commander of a local so-called 'Islamic State' affiliate in a Cairo raid, according to the country’s interior ministry.
Ashraf Ali Hassanein Gharabli died in a shooting that erupted when police tried to arrest him on Sunday in the capital’s El-Marg district, the ministry said in a statement.
It added that Gharabli had opened fire with a 9mm pistol when policemen approached him outside his car.
Gharabli was implicated in a series of militant attacks, including the beheading of a Croatian engineer last summer, the killing of an American oil worker a year earlier, and the July bombing of the Italian Consulate in Cairo, which killed one person and wounded at least 10, according to the ministry.
It said that Gharabli attempted to assassinate former interior minister Mohamed Ibrahim in 2013, and was behind the September kidnapping and killing of a guide in the Western Desert who the militants said had worked with security forces.
Egyptian security forces have for years battled an Islamic insurgency based in the Sinai Peninsula, where a local Islamic State affiliate has claimed a series of attacks against police and military checkpoints.
The fighting has surged since the army overthrew Islamist president Mohammed Morsi in 2013.