Socialist Worker

Port Said erupts over injustice of sentences

by Judith Orr
Issue No. 2344

The latest convictions in Port Said after last year’s massacre of 70 of Cairo’s Ahly “Ultra” football fans led to furious violence at the weekend. 

Only two of the nine police officers in the dock were convicted. 

But death sentences of 21 Port Said fans were confirmed and 24 more were jailed.  

Anger in Port Said has been simmering since the original verdicts in January when a military curfew was imposed.

Despite the curfew there have been strikes, school walk outs and demonstrations. 

Police have fired live ammunition into protests. 

Port Said football fans feel they have been scapegoated and that state thugs are responsible for the massacre. 

In Cairo the Ahly Ultras feel they didn't get justice and set buildings on fire in protest.

Police went on strike in over 30 police stations across Egypt on Friday complaining that the interior ministry is using them to quell political protests. 

News that the army was to be sent to replace police was welcomed by some who see the conscript force as an ally. 

But the army is not the savior of the protesters. 

As Revolutionary Socialists member Mohamed Wifqi said, “If the army is saving us from the police, as some believe, why didn't they come earlier before people died?”


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Thu 21 Mar 2013, 14:18 GMT
Issue No. 2344
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