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Egypt suspends football league after deadly clashes

Storyline:Sports, World
The Egyptian authorities have suspended football league matches indefinitely after clashes at a stadium in Cairo left at least 22 people dead.
People were crushed after police fired tear gas at supporters of Zamalek who were trying to force their way in for a match against city rivals ENPPI.
The fans blamed the authorities for opening only a single gate.
An arrest warrant has been issued for the leaders of the Zamalek supporters group, the White Knights.
The last time the league was suspended was in 2012 after 74 fans died in rioting at a game in Port Said.
At least 20 people were also injured in Cairo on Sunday at the Air Defense Stadium, witnesses say.
Despite the violence, the match went ahead.
At the stadium piles of shoes left behind by the dead and wounded were a silent testament to a stampede. Zamalek fans claim the violence began when the authorities opened just one barbed wire gate to let them in.
Witnesses told us a fence had collapsed as the crowd surged forward. “Suddenly the security forces began firing tear gas and birdshot all over the place,” one said.
Another young man told us through tears that up to 50 fans starting piling on top of each other. “We were carrying people away,” he said “to save them getting trampled to death.
It is just three years since more than 70 Egyptian fans were killed in a riot at a stadium in Port Said. After that limits were placed on the numbers attending matches. Those restrictions were lifted just weeks ago.
There’s a history of tension and animosity between the security forces and hardcore football fans – many of whom were involved in the 2011 revolution. There are fears of further clashes in the days ahead.
Hard-core Egyptian football fans are often deeply politicised and played a role in the overthrow of former President Hosni Mubarak in 2011.
Many people believe police in Port Said stood by in revenge for the fans’ role in anti-Mubarak unrest. Police deny the accusation.
Recently lifted restrictions on the numbers attending football matches, imposed after the deaths at Port Said, will now be re-imposed.
Egypt’s public prosecutor has ordered an investigation into the Cairo clashes.
Source: BBC
Policemen and soccer fans argue as fans attempt to enter a stadium to watch a match, on the outskirts of Cairo
Policemen and soccer fans argue as fans attempt to enter a stadium to watch a match, on the outskirts of Cairo
Soccer fans run behind a police car, which was set on fire by fireworks, during clashes between soccer fans and security forces in front of a stadium on the outskirts of Cairo
Egyptian firefighters extinguish fire from a vehicle outside a sports stadium in a Cairo"s northeast district