Sports minister: Premier League games will go ahead

Sports Minister Al-Emary Farouq has said Premier League games will go ahead this weekend, despite earlier calls by security officials for the fixtures to be postponed.

Farouq agreed with Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim to move the round-17 and 18 games, originally slated for Thursday and Friday, to Saturday and Sunday, during a phone call on Wednesday.

The Interior Ministry's General Security Sector notified Egypt's Football Association it was against holding the 2 fixtures due to demonstrations planned by Islamists to back President Mohamed Morsy.

Threats by supporters' groups, including Ultras Ahlawy, Ultras White Knights and Ismaili's Yellow Dragons, to storm matches also alerted security officials.

Egyptians Premier League games have been held without fans' attendance since the embattled league kicked off against last February.

Farouk told Al-Masry Al-Youm rounds 17 and 18 would be adjourned to Saturday and Sunday and praised the role of the police in protecting sports activities in Egypt.

The Egyptian Premier League restarted last February after a one-year suspension following the February 2012 Port Said football massacre. Seventy-two Ahly fans were killed in the violence.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm


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