Egyptian football league to start on time, confirms EFA official
After Port Said football violence verdict, EFA official affirms all football activities to begin 2 February in Egypt
Ahram Online, Saturday 26 Jan 2013
(Photo: Bassam EL-Zoghby)
Egypt's Premier League is set to begin as scheduled on 2 February after Saturday's verdict, EFA official Mahmoud El-Shamy declared.
Egypt’s court slammed 21 of the defendents with death sentences for the killing of 71 Ahly fans during a match in the Port Said stadium between Ahly and Masry on 1 February 2012.
A verdict against the remaining 52 defendants, accused of attacking and killing Ahly fans, is adjourned to 9 March.
All Egyptian domestic football activities have been suspended since last February, when 71 Ahly fans were killed and hundreds injured in Port Said stadium.
"The Premier League new season will begin as scheduled on 2 February after the court's decision," EFA board member and spokesman Mahmoud El-Shamy was quoted as saying by Reuters on Saturday.
"We can't comment on the verdicts as we trust in the Egyptian judiciary," he added.
Thousands of Ultras Ahlawy fans erupted into celebrations with fireworks and chanting at the Ahly Club grounds in Zamalek, Cairo upon hearing the court's verdict in the case against the accused of an attack on Ahly fans in Port Said stadium.
Meanwhile, clashes erupted Saturday morning as angry Port Said crowds are attempting to break into the prison to free the accused. Security forces responded by firing tear gas to disperse the crowd.
Eight have been reported dead – two police officers and six civilians – in current Port Said clashes and at least 80 injured, according to Egypt's interior and health ministries.
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