Thursday, February 2, 2012


HURT IN EGYPTIAN SOCCER RIOT - Egyptian health ministry officials say at least 74 people were killed and hundreds of others injured Wednesday in violence following a soccer match in the northern city of Port Said, on the Mediterranean coast.  Fans of the home team, al-Masry, swarmed the field after a rare win against al-Ahly, Egypt’s top team. They threw rocks, fireworks and bottles at opposing fans and players. Live television footage showed fans running onto the field and chasing al-Ahly players, setting off clashes and a stampede. The footage also showed images of a fire in the stadium.  The head of Egypt’s ruling military council, Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi, ordered two helicopters sent to Port Said to fly out some of the visiting team and its fans. The helicopters will transfer the injured to military hospitals. Egypt’s state prosecutor has ordered an immediate investigation into the violence and the country’s football association called for an indefinite suspension of the annual championship.

Soon after the violence, another match in the capital, Cairo, was halted by the referee after receiving news of the violence in Port Said, prompting fans to set parts of that stadium on fire. Violence at soccer matches across North Africa has increased significantly since political unrest sweeping across the region began more than a year ago.  Egypt is not immune to soccer violence. In April, the ineffectiveness of the police force also was on display when thousands of fans ran onto the field before the end of an African Champions’ game between local club Zamalek and Tunisia’s club Africain. The hundreds of police on duty at Cairo International Stadium could not stop the violence then either. Activists quickly scheduled rallies Thursday outside the headquarters of the Interior Ministry in Cairo to protest the inability of the police to stop the bloodshed.  TV footage showed Al-Ahly players rushing for their locker room as fistfights broke out among the hundreds of fans swarming on to the field. Some men had to rescue a manager from the losing team as he was being beaten.

At least 74 people were killed and 248 injured after soccer fans rushed the field in the seaside city of Port Said following an upset victory by the home team over Egypt's top club, setting off clashes and a stampede as riot police largely failed to intervene. It was a bloody reminder of the deteriorating security in the Arab world's most populous country.  The root-cause of unrest and discord is ignorance of our real-self.  We should find a common ground which unites us all.

There is an outbreak of conflagration of group clashes throughout the world. ... When there are different centers of interests, nobody can avoid clashing of individuals, groups, nations etc. As for example, if circles are drawn with different centers, circumferences will cross, but if there is one center of interest there may be smaller or bigger circles but there will be no crossing. According to Lord Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu there should be knowledge of the real self, real interest and one center of interest.  Supreme Lord Sri Krishna who is ‘Achyuta’ can only be the common center of interest from whom all the spirit souls have emanated. If we pour water at the root of the tree, whole tree is nourished with all its parts, in like manner, by serving Krishna we serve all.

Śrīla Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Mahārāja :
“Strongest Spiritual Force on Earth”
Statements at a press conference, 12-29-2000, Mumbai.
Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math -

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