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Ultras Ahlawy protest before High Court

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The group demanded the release of 25 Ultras Ahlawy members who were detained during clashes at Cairo Airport

Ultras fans protest the detainment of their colleagues  (Photo by Haleem El-Shaarani)

Ultras fans protest the detainment of their colleagues
(Photo by Haleem El-Shaarani)

Ultras Ahlawy organised a march to the High Court on Saturday to protest the detention of 25 fellow members during clashes between the group and Security Forces at the Cairo Airport last Sunday.

Around 1000 protesters marched from Al-Ahly Club in Al-Zamalek to the High Court, blocking the 6 October Bridge and Ramses Street.

The protesters raised banners saying “Freedom for Ultras” and chanted for the release of their fellow members.

One protester raised a Rabaa (pro-Morsi ) sign over 6 October Bridge, he was quietly told not to raise the sign by protesters.

The demonstrators stood for 30 minutes in front of the High Court then the march was self-dispersed.

The 25 Ultras members were detained by Al Nozha Prosecution for 15 days pending investigations. According to a statement issued by the Ministry of Interior (MOI) on Sunday night, the Ultras group went to the airport to welcome the Al-Ahly handball team which was returning from Morocco. The statement read that the group used fireworks and tried to break into Arrival Hall 1 when it was stopped by security forces, and resulted in the injury of 11 policemen. According to the statement, injuries were due to being shot by birdshots.

The detained Ultras Ahlawy members are being investigated on charges of attempted murder, provoking riots, thuggery, using fireworks, resisting authorities and vandalism of public installations, Aswat Masriya reported.

Those claims were denied by the Ultras group, which issued a statement saying that no fireworks were used in the airport and that security forces attacked the group members. The group’s statement read “why would the group hold weapons to greet their team”, denying the claims by the MOI that the group members used birdshots.

On the next day, Monday, a 500-man-march walked through Salah Salem road in Heliopolis, the march was dispersed by security forces using teargas.

The Ultras group issued another statement on Monday, calling for Saturday’s march.

The statement condemned the absence of “rule of law” saying that the 25 detained members were verbally and physically assaulted during their detention in Wadi Al-Natrun prison.

The group added that the detained were interrogated in the absence of their lawyers at 3 AM.

On Friday, three people were arrested and taken to the Giza police station for handing leaflets in support of detained Ultras Ahlawy members, according to their lawyer Amr Imam.

Ahmed Gehad, and two others were interrogated by Giza prosecution on Saturday morning.

Imam, who attended the interrogations, said that no report was filed for the interrogations due to lack of inquiries by the Giza police station detectives, “what happened was an oral conversation between the Prosecution and the detainees”.

 Giza prosecution decided that interrogations will restart on Sunday; Imam expected that the trio will be released then.

“There were orders by the MOI that the three arrested should stay for one more day in lockdown,” Imam remarked.

The relationship between Ultras groups and the MOI has always been tense. The latest clashes were between Zamalek Club backing group, Ultras White Knights and security forces causing the death of a group member, allegedly with bullets fired by the club’s chairman’s bodyguards.


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