In The Name Of God The Most Merciful, Most Compassionate

Scores killed in Egypt football violence

by Al Jazeera and agencies
Source: Al Jazeera

Filed under: Egyptian Revolution 2011,Featured,Middle East,News |

At least 73 people have been killed in clashes after a football game in the northern Egyptian city of Port Said, medics say.

About 1,000 others were injured in Wednesday’s violence, including police. At least two players suffered light injuries.

Fans of the winning al-Masry team flooded the field seconds after the match with al-Ahly, Egypt’s top team, was over.

A security official said the fans chased the players and cornered their supporters on the field and around the stadium,
throwing stones and bottles at them.

Thousands of supporters covered the field, as seen in a video posted online.

“This is unfortunate and deeply saddening. It is the biggest disaster in Egypt’s soccer history,” Hesham Sheiha, deputy health minister, said.

He said most of the injuries were caused by concussion and deep cuts.

Al-Ahly football players were trapped in the changing room along with supporters. Riot police were sent in to drive the rival crowds of fans back.

‘War, not football’

Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, the head of Egypt’s ruling military council, sent army helicopters to transfer al-Ahly football players and injured fans from Port Said.

Private cars helped to shuttle the injured across the city to hospitals.

“This is not football. This is a war and people are dying in front of us. There is no movement and no security and no
ambulances,” al-Ahly player Abo Treika told the team’s television channel.

“This is a horrible situation and today can never be forgotten.”

State television announced that parliament will hold an emergency session over the violence. State prosecutors ordered an investigation into the pitch invasion and the violence that ensued.

The Muslim Brotherhood, the country’s largest political force, accused supporters of the toppled president, Hosni Mubarak, of instigating the violence.

“The events in Port Said are planned and are a message from the remnants of the former regime,” Essam al-Erian, a parliamentarian, said in a statement on the group’s Freedom and Justice Party website.

Al-Ahly’s supporter club, Ultras, said on their website that they would head to Port Said later in the evening.

History of clashes

FIFA President Sepp Blatter said he was “very shocked and saddened” to learn that a large number of football supporters had died or been injured”.

“This is a black day for football,” he said in a statement. “Such a catastrophic situation is nimaginable and should not happen.”

Al-Masry team won a rare 3-1 victory against Al-Ahly on its home turn in Wednesday’s match.

The two teams have a long history of bad blood, and clashes have erupted in recent years between their fans.

Al Jazeera’s Rawya Rageh, reporting from Cairo, said al-Ahly fans were said to have been provoking al-Masry fans throughout the game with abusive language.

But our correspondent said the issue goes beyond the pitch, as Egypt is experiencing a “security vacuum” after the revolution which overthrew Mubarak.

“There were clearly riot police on that pitch, but they were seen either not getting involved or running in the other direction,” she said.

“Some people say the police force perhaps has not been trained to deal with violence, except in the way they were trained during Mubarak, which was with sheer and brutal force. And now when they can’t do that, they’re unable to deal with violence.”

A match in Cairo on Wednesday evening was interrupted following the news of the deaths in Port Said. Television footage showed a big fire behind the supporter stand at the Cairo stadium.

The Premier League, which the games were part of, was suspended indefinitely.

16 comments
Aniq Farooqi
Aniq Farooqi

Yes they are my friend, and I hope they will be judged and justic for the familyes.

Aniq Farooqi
Aniq Farooqi

Aske the same question during the riot between Liverpool FC and Inter Milan. Its the same pattern my friend. Hooliganism is not new. In UK during the midt 80-90's hooliganism was a Very Big issue for the british, the english fans fought each other before, during and after every match. People got killed there too. Now every known hooligan-criminal is registered in a international system. Besides club riots they also errupt during national events like England vs Germany, Turkey vs England, Why? Corruption? Or anything Els? No, because of national emotions between two stupid groups that think their at "war". Ilm people, strive for it, work for it and protect it.

Yenner Yj
Yenner Yj

rehman why are people go to watch soccer with knives?

Aniq Farooqi
Aniq Farooqi

Its only soccer hooligans, stop instigating with conspiracy. Not all of the arab problems is because of the west, corruption or anything els. Have you thougth of, maybe they'r just imbeciles showing their anger on the pitch? Most of the people that have died in this tragedy is because of the stamped. So plz people, use what Allah Saw has given you (for free) your brain. Ilm is what we need and what we have to use to get further in life. My deepest sympaties with the family whom has suffered. inna lillahi wa in lillah rajioon.

Kal Khan
Kal Khan

Allah has given strength to all Muslims it's up to the Muslims to to show strength and stand together as one

Lucky Luke
Lucky Luke

People whit out the Iman in the heart. That horde, they are not Muslims! They have no fear of Allah, the Almighty! To kill because of Football??

Mohammed M. Shaaban
Mohammed M. Shaaban

We will remain still
We will collect our thoughts together
We will figure out the answer
We will fight and we will never give up
and Allah will be proud of us isA

Laura Collin
Laura Collin

:(( want to comment but too angry and sick inside to find the right words at such unecessary loss of lives :((

Mohammed M. Shaaban
Mohammed M. Shaaban

The Police, security systems all over Egypt are pro-Mubarak. They're worshipping him more than God and they love him more than Egypt..I dont know if I should pray to God or run away from his blames on doomsday for me to watch this happen and remain still

Ihab Al Kabary
Ihab Al Kabary

It's not soccer hooligans .. they are "hired thugs" by the old regime who is loosing power to the Muslim brotherhood

MV Editor
MV Editor moderator

Sorry video is only in Arabic

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