Egypt Independent

Ministry of Interior says no Egypt Cup

The Interior Ministry officially informed the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) on Sunday that there would be no resumption of football activity in Egypt at the current time.

A deadly stampede on 1 February in Port Said following a match between the Masry and Ahly football clubs killed 74 people and injured hundreds of others, leading the EFA to cancel the rest of this season’s league matches.

The events highlighted deteriorating security nearly a year after former President Hosni Mubarak was swept out of power in a popular uprising. It was the worst case of football violence in Egypt and the deadliest incident worldwide since 1996.

However, the EFA insisted to host the Egypt Cup to reduce the financial losses of the clubs and the advertisement companies that suffered from the cancellation of football.

The EFA was informed on Sunday that the Egypt Cup, the main "knockout" football cup competition in Egypt would not be played during the period between 20-30 April.

The Ministry of Interior said in a letter posted on EFA’s website that the police currently cannot approve the resumption of the football activity until the end of the Port Said violence trial.

Last week, 73 people, including nine senior police officers, began the trial, in which they are charged with killing 75 during the violence.