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Over 30 dead, army deployed in Egypt as riot flares up in Port Said after stadium stampede death sentences (PHOTOS)

Published time: January 26, 2013 08:26
Edited time: January 27, 2013 12:36

Egyptian protesters and fans of al-Masry football club take part in a demonstration in front of the prison in the Egyptian Suez Canal city of Port Said on January 25, 2013, calling for the prisoners who are suspected of killing 74 fans of al-Ahly club during a football match in February 2012, not to be transferred to Cairo to attend their trial. (AFP Photo)

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32 people have been killed, including two policemen, and more than 300 injured during a riot in Egypt’s Port Said. The army has since been deployed, where a crowd attempted to storm a prison after death sentences were handed out for a past riot.

Egypt's Interior Ministry says 130 rioters have been arrested across the country, Al Arabiya reports.

The deadly assault follows the sentencing of 21 people to death for the riot and stampede in Port Said in which dozens were killed last February.

As the verdict was issued in Port Said, the families of the condemned attempted to storm the city prison, Egyptian state TV reported. Several sources reported that automatic rifles using live ammunition have been shot from the crowd at the scene.

Two police officers were gunned down outside the prison. There are also reports of two football players among other civilian deaths in the riots, according to AP.

The director of hospitals in the city, Dr Abdel Raham Farah, says Mahmoud Abdel-Halim al-Dizawi, a footballer, who plays for Port Said's Al-Marikh club, was shot three times and died.

He says Tamer al-Fahla, a former player for the city's main team Al-Masry, was also shot dead on his way to the rival Al-Marikh club.

The club is near a prison residents tried to storm Saturday to free defendants in the soccer stadium riot trial. The military has been deployed to try and restore security.

Security forces had to fire teargas to disperse the crowd, mainly family members, trying to break into the prison with rocks and firearms.

A police station was torched and a minibus that belonged to one of the media channels was set on fire.

Egypt’s army has managed to take control of Port Said prison and Suez Canal building at around 1600 GMT, according to Al Arabiya. The entrances to the port city have been cordoned off.

There have been reports that a Greek ship was forced to leave Port Said after being fired at, according to Al Arabiya.

Relatives and friends of Egyptian protesters who were killed in Suez during clashes with riot police yesterday, load a body onto an ambulance outside the morgue in Suez on January 26, 2013. (AFP Photo)
Relatives and friends of Egyptian protesters who were killed in Suez during clashes with riot police yesterday, load a body onto an ambulance outside the morgue in Suez on January 26, 2013. (AFP Photo)
Egyptian fans of Al-Ahly football club celebrate outside the club′s headquarters in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after a court sentenced 21 people to death over a football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Khaled Desouki)
Egyptian fans of Al-Ahly football club celebrate outside the club's headquarters in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after a court sentenced 21 people to death over a football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Khaled Desouki)

More than 70 accused are standing trial over the tragedy at the stadium. Among them are nine security officials.

Saturday’s sentences are now to be confirmed by Egypt’s top religious authority, the Grand Mufti. The court is to hear the cases of the other accused in early March.

The tragic riot on February 1, 2012, between fans of home team Al-Masry and Cairo's visiting Al-Ahly left over 70 people dead and sparked days of violent protests in the capital, which claimed 16 more lives. It was the deadliest football-related incident in 15 years and the worst in Egypt’s history.

News of the verdict was welcomed with cheers and fireworks by members of the Ultras, the hard core fans of Al-Ahly. They were demonstrating in front of their club building.

Relatives of the defendants protesting in Port Said expressed anger and dismay over the verdict.

The sentencing comes the day after the second anniversary of the revolution that toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. The date has been marked by violent protest in the country, which left at least nine people killed and hundreds injured.

Female relatives react as the vedict is read in an Egyptian court room in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after it sentenced 21 people to death over the football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Ahmed Mahmoud)
Female relatives react as the vedict is read in an Egyptian court room in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after it sentenced 21 people to death over the football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Ahmed Mahmoud)
Smoke billows from a burning minibus belonging to a satellite channel after it was set on fire by Egyptian protesters outside the Port Said prison in the Egyptian canal city on January 26, 2013. (AFP Photo)
Smoke billows from a burning minibus belonging to a satellite channel after it was set on fire by Egyptian protesters outside the Port Said prison in the Egyptian canal city on January 26, 2013. (AFP Photo)
 Egyptian relatives react as the vedict is read in a court room in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after the it sentenced 21 people to death over the football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Ahmed Mahmoud)
Egyptian relatives react as the vedict is read in a court room in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after the it sentenced 21 people to death over the football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Ahmed Mahmoud)
 An Egyptian protester and fan of al-Masry football club waves a flare as others chant slogans during a demonstration in front of the prison in the Egyptian Suez Canal city of Port Said on January 25, 2013, calling for the prisoners who are suspected of killing 74 fans of al-Ahly club during a football match in February 2012, not to be transferred to Cairo to attend their trial. (AFP Photo)
An Egyptian protester and fan of al-Masry football club waves a flare as others chant slogans during a demonstration in front of the prison in the Egyptian Suez Canal city of Port Said on January 25, 2013, calling for the prisoners who are suspected of killing 74 fans of al-Ahly club during a football match in February 2012, not to be transferred to Cairo to attend their trial. (AFP Photo)
Egyptian fans of Al-Ahly football club celebrate outside the club′s headquarters in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after a court sentenced 21 people to death over a football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Khaled Desouki)
Egyptian fans of Al-Ahly football club celebrate outside the club's headquarters in Cairo on January 26, 2013 after a court sentenced 21 people to death over a football riot that killed more than 70 people last year. (AFP Photo/Khaled Desouki)
Al Ahly fans, also known as "Ultras", celebrate and shout slogans inside Al Ahly club′s training stadium, after hearing the final verdict of the 2012 Port Said massacre in Cairo January 26, 2013. (Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)
Al Ahly fans, also known as "Ultras", celebrate and shout slogans inside Al Ahly club's training stadium, after hearing the final verdict of the 2012 Port Said massacre in Cairo January 26, 2013. (Reuters/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)