Aljazeera's reporter in Cairo said the arrests followed Saturday's attacks in Abd al-Munaim Riyad square in central Cairo and the gunfight in the al-Sayyida Aisha area that killed three Egyptians and wounded 10 people including foreign tourists.

According to Egyptian sources, security forces arrested at least 200 people in an industrial area in Shubra al-Khaima where the suspects of Saturday's operations as well as the perpetrator of the al-Azhar bomb attack came from.

"Around 200 people were arrested, some briefly, during police operations in the slums of Ezbet al-Gabalawi, Al-Amar and Ezbet Rushdi, where the families of the perpetrators and people implicated in the three attacks ... live," said a police source.

Muhammad Salah, an expert on Islamic groups, told Aljazeera the attacks represented a new phenomenon of violence in Egypt.
 
"Repetition of these attacks represents a reflection of new activities by unknown fundamentalists, coming from an unobserved generation," Salah said. 

Motives

"The attackers may have personal motivations. However, the repetition of such attacks is dangerous. At the same time, we cannot conclude that danger lies in organised groups only.
 
"The new issue now is the direct female participation in attacks. Therefore, this is a new indicator of future danger. 
 
"Someone may express his or her opinion in an article, another in a demonstration, but now these opinions are being expressed through violence," he added.