Port Said's new governor headed security during football massacre

Port Said's new governor headed security during football massacre
A controversial Egyptian general has been promoted to governor of Port Said, despite heading security for a football game in the city which ended in a massacre four years ago.
2 min read
27 December, 2015
The Port Said massacre sent shock waves through Egypt [AFP]

An Egyptian army general who was accused of complicity in the Port Said massacre has been made governor of Port Said city on the country's Mediterranean coast.

Major General Adel al-Ghadban was responsible for security in Port Said in 2012 when a game between al-Ahly and al-Masry football teams ended in a massacre.

Rioting in the stadium led to the deaths of at least 74 al-Ahly fans. 

Ghadban is reported to have testified during an inquest into the massacre. He said the most likely cause the massacre was "overcrowding".

Ghadban failed to appear before court on four separate occasions while the case was being held.

Al-Ahly "ultras" - die hard-supporters of the Cairo club - were known for challenging military rule in Egypt, both during the 2011 revolution and the subsequent transition period.

El-Masry supporters charged into a stand holding visiting al-Ahly supporters during the game. 

Some were attacked with knives, stones and fireworks, while others died during a stampede or after being thrown from the stands.

Many were suspicious about the circumstances, such as the doors of the stadium being welded shut.

It led many to believe the attacks were related to al-Ahly's vocal opposition to the military junta.

A week of riots in Cairo ensured, while domestic games were cancelled for two years.

A number of club officials, police officers and supporters were found guilty for complicity in the massacre.

Ghadban is one of many prominent military figures who have been appointed to leading positions in Egypt. This includes Magdi Fouad Hijazi's who was made the governor of Aswan.