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    Medvedev Sends Condolences to Egypt Over Deadly Stadium Riot

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    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday sent a telegram of condolence to Egypt's de facto president Hussein Tantawi over the football stadium violence that left at least 74 people dead.

    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday sent a telegram of condolence to Egypt's de facto president Hussein Tantawi over the football stadium violence that left at least 74 people dead.

    Rival fans clashed and a stampede ensued at the Port Said stadium after home team Al-Masry defeated Al-Ahly, one of Egypt’s top clubs from Cairo, 3-1 on Wednesday night.

    At least 1,000 people were injured in the deadliest football incident since a 1996 stampede in Guatemala City that killed 80 people.

    "It is with deep sympathy that I took the news of the tragic incident on February 1 at the Port Said stadium," the Kremlin website quoted the telegram, addressed to Field Marshal Tuawti, Egypt's military ruler, as saying.

    "I ask you to pass on my sincere condolences to the families of those who perished and wish the speediest of recoveries those who were wounded as a result of these events."

    The Egyptian authorities have announced a national three-day mourning period following the riots.

    Meanwhile, Russia's former FIFA vice-president Vyacheslav Koloskov said Thursday that the violence rests "on the conscience" of the match organizers.

    "No measures whatsoever were taken to prevent a massive crowd of people on the pitch,” Koloskov, a FIFA vice-president from 1980 to 1996, told RIA Novosti.

    “The result was that dozens of people ran onto the pitch and caused a bloodbath. Furthermore, some of them were even carrying bladed weapons. If these could be quietly carried into the stadium, then what can we say about the security measures?”

    Koloskov is the honorary president of the Russian Football Union, which he headed from 1992 to 2005 after a long career as a football official and sports scientist.

     

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