CAIRO (AFP) - A car bomb struck Cairo police headquarters on Friday, killing at least three people in an early morning blast heard across the Egyptian capital, police and health ministry officials said.
The explosion sent a large plume of smoke billowing above the city and left a deep crater in the street.
"It was a car bomb," interior ministry spokesman Hany Abdel Latif told AFP.
State television reported at least three dead and 35 wounded in the explosion, which blew out the windows of the building in the central Cairo district of Abdeen.
The blast destroyed a metal gate outside the multi-storey building and badly damaged its facade as well as that of a nearby Islamic museum.
Riot police pushed back hundreds of onlookers, some of whom chanted slogans against the Muslim Brotherhood.
Militants have escalated attacks since the military overthrow Islamist president Mohamed Mursi in July.
Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood has denied involvement in the attacks, but was blacklisted as a terrorist group after 15 people were killed when a suicide bomber blew up a vehicle at a police headquarters north of Cairo in December.
An Al-Qaeda inspired group, Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, claimed responsibility for that attack.