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Sisi clarifies his statement on Ultras
Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has clarified his recent statements about the Ultras Ahlawy group, saying that his words were misinterpreted.
El-Sisi recently invited Ultras Ahlawy group to participate in a committee to investigate the 2012 Port Said Massacre. The statement came in conjunction with the group’s gathering to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the incident that left 72 people dead.
The President, however, said on Saturday that the media misinterpreted his words regarding his invitation for 10 of the group members to follow the investigations.
“I suggested forming the committee to reassure them [the UA group], but I found people interpreting it as an interference in the judicial affairs,” El-Sisi said.
“I did not say anything about anybody interfering in the court’s rulings as people assumed. Nobody is allowed to do so,” the president added.
The committee will get to know the facts reached by the investigators concerning the tragedy, according to the president.
El-Sisi added that “truth is lost amid the hustle”, in reference to the UA group gathering in Mokhtar El-Tetsh Stadium at Al Ahly headquarters on the tragedy’s fourth anniversary.
“Let us assume that the crowd [UA who were at Mokhar El-Tetsh Stadium] stampeded, how many will die? A committee will be formed to investigate the issue, but everyone will talk about ‘hidden hands’ being involved,” concluded the president.
Despite the court ruling, in which eleven people were sentenced to death and 25 people received lengthy prison terms, the group believes the real culprits remain unpunished.
The fans, who gathered at Al Ahly headquarters on 2 February, chanted against former defense minister Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, who was the country’s de facto leader in 2012, and the interior ministry accusing them of complicity in the tragedy.