Update: 3 more ultras detained in connection to anniversary of Port Said stadium tragedy
Courtesy: Ultras Ahlawy official Facebook page

Three additional members of the Ultras Ahlawy, Ahly Football Club’s hardcore fan group, were charged with protesting and joining an outlawed organization on Friday February 3, in connection with the fifth anniversary of the 2012 Port Said stadium tragedy. 

The prosecution detained the three ultras in Amereya on Wednesday February 1 for 15 days, pending investigations, accusing them of distributing printed material inciting protests to commemorate those who died during the tragedy.

All but eight of the 117 people arrested on the anniversary were released late Thursday, without charge. The eight people who remained in detention were referred to prosecution on charges of illegal assembly, thuggery and blocking the road, before being released on LE500 bail on Friday.

Egyptian authorities held the 117 detainees after their arrest without presenting them to investigative authorities, despite Article 54 of the Constitution stipulating that all detainees are to be investigated within 24 hours of arrest.

The arrests occurred during a security crackdown to restrict any events commemorating the Port Said Stadium tragedy. The detainees were subsequently held at the Dokki and Qasr al-Nil police stations, Mounir told Mada Masr earlier on Thursday.

Clashes broke out on February 1, 2012 between supporters of Ahly SC  and Masry SC at the end of a match at Port Said Stadium between the two teams. Seventy-two people were killed and hundreds were injured in the violence. Security forces have been accused of negligence and complicity in the event by fostering violence to target Ultras Ahlawy who played a significant role in the January 25 revolution.

Wednesday’s security crackdown focused on a wide area around the Ahly sports club in Zamalek, including streets and metro stations. Random passersby were arrested despite an announcement by Ultras Ahlawy that an event at the Mokhtar al-Tetsh Stadium at the Ahly Sporting Club to commemorate the tragedy had been canceled.

The cancellation followed news that security forces had arrested several ultras and sent threats to those already detained at the 15 May police station. 

According to Mounir, the charges filed against the ultras reflects complicity between the prosecution and the Interior Ministry. The lawyer added that one of those arrested was actually a fan of the competing Zamalek Club.

“We are well aware of your plans. We are well aware of your manipulation of the repressed emotions of the Ahly Club fans on such a day and of their eagerness to commemorate their martyrs,” read a statement released by the Ultras Ahlawy on January 30.


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