2/02/2012

Egypt football violence: Tear gas during Cairo clashes

BBCNEWS

Nearly 400 people have been injured in Cairo in fresh clashes between police and protesters angered by the deaths of 74 people on Wednesday after a football match in the city of Port Said.

Thousands marched to the interior ministry, where police fired tear gas to keep them back.
Earlier, the Egyptian prime minister announced the sackings of several senior officials.
Funerals of some of the victims took place in Port Said.
The deaths on Wednesday came when fans invaded the pitch after a football match involving top Cairo club al-Ahly and the Port Said side al-Masry.

Throughout Thursday, al-Ahly supporters gathered outside the club's stadium in Cairo. A series of protest marches moved towards Tahrir Square, and then on to the ministry of interior.
Some chanted slogans against Egypt's military rulers, while others threw stones.
"Our army must choose between the military council and the revolutionaries,'' they chanted.
Police fired tear gas to keep the thousands of protesters away from the ministry, which is protected by concrete barricades.
Motorcycles ferried the injured from the scene as ambulances were unable to get through.
The Egyptian state news agency Mena quoted a health ministry official as saying 388 protesters were injured. Most of them were suffering from tear gas inhalation as well as bruises and broken bones from rocks that were thrown.
Al-Ahly supporters, known as "ultras", played a prominent role in last year's street protests which led to the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak.
The BBC's Jon Leyne, in Cairo, says the ultras believe they were targeted for their support for the revolution over the past year.
They accuse the police of deliberately allowing al-Masry fans to attack them.

Bitterness

Earlier on Thursday, parliament met in emergency session, beginning with a minute's silence.
Prime Minister Kamal al-Ganzouri told MPs the head of Egypt's football association had been sacked and the board dissolved, with its members referred to prosecutors for questioning.
Port Said's director of security and the head of investigations were suspended and are now in custody, Mr Ganzouri said.
Police in Egypt have been keeping a much lower profile since last year's popular protests.
The Muslim Brotherhood - which has emerged as Egypt's biggest party in recent elections - blamed ex-President Mubarak's supporters for the violence.