Ultras Ahlawy protest arrest of members in Menoufiya

Ahram Online, Saturday 16 Mar 2013

Hundreds of hardcore football fans are protesting at the prosecutor-general's office in Cairo over the recent arrest of 38 members in Menoufiya

Ultras Ahlawy
Ultras Ahlawy protesting in front of the High Court (Photo: Ahram Arabic website)

Hundreds of fans of Ahly football club, known as the Ultras Ahlawy, are staging a protest at the High Court building in central Cairo on Saturday to call for the release of members of the group who were detained in the Delta governorate of Menoufiya.

The large group chanted against the interior ministry and lit fire-works. In addition, Ultras members are staging a protest in front of the deportation prison in Menoufiya, calling for the same demands.

Thirty-eight members of the Ultras were arrested in Menoufiya on Wednesday, following clashes with police at Shebin El-Kom court.

The group had gathered at the court to protest against the detention of one of their members, who was arrested in front of the governorate's security directorate the previous week on charges of rioting and attempting to storm the directorate. 

However, clashes broke out with the security forces as the Ultras threw rocks and fire-works at the court and the police responded by firing tear-gas to disperse the crowds.

The police then arrested 38 Ultras members on charges of "torching [the court], joining illegitimate groups, and attempting to help prisoners escape and insulting police forces." Those arrested denied all the accusations.

The group announced on their official Facebook page on Friday that they will be marching to the prosecutor-general's office at the High Court building in Cairo to demand the releasing of the 38 Ultras.

The group also protested last week against the verdicts in the Port Said football killings case. 

Twenty-one people were sentenced to death and a number of defendants, including two of the nine police officials on trial, received lengthy sentences. The Ultras, although satisfied with the 21 death sentences, deemed the short sentences of the two convicted police officers and the acquittal of the seven other police officers insufficient.  

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