subsequently said that it wanted to prevent what happened in February 2015, the last time authorities agreed to allow larger numbers of fans into a stadium, when some 20 UWK
supporters were killed in Cairo by security forces .
In early October, 48 UWK
members were arrested on their way to attend a handball match in Alexandria.
The sentencing of the 15 UWK
members and the earlier blocking of Ahlawy members to get into a stadium where Zamalek and Ahli were scheduled to kick off in a derby threatens to slam the door even before it really swung open to a dialogue that could help Egypt tackle its multiple problems.
, on the other hand, questioned why the state continues to have football matches without fans, and whose interest this decision benefits.
Mortada has identified the UWK
and other militant fans or ultras as enemies of the state aligned with the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.
In a videotaped response, Mansour warned UWK
members against attending the match, stating that the club is acting out of respect for the Ministry of Interior, the state, and in fear for the safety of the ultras members themselves.
He charged that UWK
had been paid to provoke a confrontation with security forces.
The verdict also followed the start of a trial against 16 people, including UWK
members, charged with violent acts, arson and rioting that led on February 8 to a stampede outside Cairo's Air Defence Stadium in which 20 people were killed.
Youssef already stated the crowds [present during the incident] were thugs and not football fans, as he claimed they destroyed cars parked on the street and pushed each other [towards the stadium's gate]," UWK
said in a statement Saturday.
The employment of the law against the fans follows two failed attempts by Mortada Mansour, the controversial president of Zamalek, to persuade the courts to ban the UWK
as a terrorist organization.
We called to reA[degrees]investigate into the case of the massacre and this happened and we demand to release all UKW fans accused of this issue and put the real criminals," UWK
's statement read.
Police had repeatedly advised the UWK
in the 24 hours prior to the match that they would be blocked from entering with their paraphernalia that is a staple of ultras performances worldwide.