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74 killed in football violence in Egypt's Pot Said

London, Thu, 02 Feb 2012 ANI

London, Feb 2 (ANI): At least 74 people have been killed in clashes between rival fans following a football match in the Egyptian city of Port Said.


Scores were injured as fans reportedly armed with knives invaded the pitch after a match between top-tier clubs al-Masry and al-Ahly.


Wednesday's violence broke out at the end of the match, which, unusually, Port Said side al-Masry won 3-1.


Officials fear the death toll could rise further.


The Egyptian Deputy Health Minister termed it as the biggest disaster in the country's football history, The BBC reports.


"This is unfortunate and deeply saddening," Hesham Sheiha told state television.


A statement posted on the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces' Facebook page announced three days of national mourning, beginning on Thursday.


The statement also promised a full investigation into the incident.


The BBC reports that Egyptian fans are notoriously violent, particularly supporters of al-Ahly known as the Ultras.


They have been heavily implicated in confronting the police during recent political protests, it adds.


All premier-league matches have been cancelled and the newly-elected Egyptian parliament is to hold an emergency session on Thursday.Fifa President Sepp Blatter issued a statement, expressing his shock over the incident. (ANI)


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