After Friday violence in Port Said, 33 reported dead
CAIRO: The death toll from Saturday’s violence in Egypt’s Port Said rose to 33 people after the city became the site of massive clashes after a court verdict earlier yesterday.
The violence erupted after families of the defendants sentenced to death converged on the prison using live ammunition.
The Armed Forces said it decided on Saturday to deploy units from its second army to maintain stability in Port Said and protect the public facilities, reported the Middle East News Agency.
An Egyptian judge early morning Saturday sentenced 21 defendants for their role in the Port Said football massacre that left at least 75 people dead on February 1, 2012. The names of those sentenced for capital punishment have been sent to the Grand Mufti, who must approve the death sentence before it can be carried out.
As the judge was announcing the verdict, cheers from the families of those killed in the violence reacted with cries as for them, justice is being served.
No police or security officials were sentenced in today’s ruling. A second verdict is scheduled for March 9.
In Cairo, thousands of al-Ahly fans, or Ultras, many of whom were in Port Said during the massacre, waited at the club’s headquarters for the verdict. When announced, they also let out a cheer of relief.
One man in the Port Said court was shown on national television holding a picture of his son as tears ran down his face.
The massacre left Egypt shocked as scenes of violence spread across televisions last February, leading to violent clashes in downtown Cairo after fans from the al-Ahly team accused the ministry of interior of culpability in allowing the violence in Port Said to take place.