Egypt's Sisi pledges to 'hold accountable' those responsible for deadly train collision
2017-08-12 11:21:00

 

People gather at the train crash site in Alexandria province, Egypt, on Aug. 11, 2017. (Xinhua/Asmaa Abdelatif)

CAIRO, Aug. 11 -- As Egyptians mourn the victims of a deadly train collision that killed 49, Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi ordered state bodies to hold those responsible accountable.

Sisi has ordered an investigation into the cause of the collision, official MENA news agency reported.

Earlier in the day, an Alexandria-bound train coming from Cairo crashed into the rear of another train on its way from Port Said Mediterranean city to Alexandria, killing 49 people and injuring more than 100 others.

The accident took place in Kourshid area, east of the coastal city of Alexandria.

Sisi expressed his deepest sorrow and condolences to the families of the victims, stressing that the government will provide full care for the wounded.

Meanwhile, the health ministry announced that a state of emergency has been declared across Alexandria and neighboring Beheira and Gharbiya provinces.

The ministry said some 75 ambulances have been transferring the victims, and the number of casualties may rise due to the seriousness of many injuries.

Egypt's general prosecutor has also ordered an urgent investigation into the accident right after its occurrence, while Prime Minister Sherif Ismail has called for the formation of a specialized committee from the Transport Ministry for the investigation.

Transport Minister Hisham Arafatconfirmed that a panel was formed to investigate the deadly accident, adding that the results of the probe will be announced once it is finished.

He also promised that those who are responsible for the crash will be brought to justice.

The Egyptian army has also participated in the rescue.

A military statement said army hospitals have been put on alert to receive the injured.

It added that two giant truck-loaded cranes have been deployed to help lift the damaged train carriages.

Military rescue teams, along with 15 ambulances, have been sent to the site of the collision, the statement added.

Moreover, each family of the victims will receive 50,000 Egyptian pounds (around 2,800 U.S. dollars) as compensation, said Social Solidarity Minister Ghad Wali.

All those wounded in the crash will receive treatment and get compensation according to their level of injury, the minister said.

Egypt has witnessed a number of deadly train accidents in which hundreds died and injured.

In 2013, at least 19 were killed in a train derailment in Giza governorate, while a collision between a train and a school bus in 2012 in Upper Egypt killed 51, mostly children.

Source: People's Daily Online Editor: Jennifer