Authorities in Egypt have ordered the arrest of eight people in connection with a train collision in the city of Sohag that killed 18 people last week, the prosecutor’s office said on Monday.
“The prosecutor general ordered that the two drivers… their two assistants, the guard of a traffic control tower, the head of traffic control in Assiut and two other guards … be remanded in custody,” a statement from the prosecutor said.
It put the death toll from Friday’s crash at 18, down from 19 cited by the health ministry on Saturday, and an initially reported 32.
The arrests come after President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi pledged tough punishment for those responsible for the crash, which was initially blamed on unidentified passengers “activating emergency brakes” in one train.
Surveillance camera footage of the accident seen by AFP showed one speeding train barreling into another as it rolled slowly down the tracks, sending a carriage hurtling into the air in a cloud of dust.
The accident has come at a time the most populous Arab nation is struggling with another major transport challenge – a giant container ship blocking the Suez Canal, a vital shipping lane for international trade and a revenue earner for Egypt.
On Monday, Egypt’s Suez Canal Authority (SCA) said that the Ever Given container ship, which has been blocking the crucial waterway for nearly a week, was partially refloated and has been turned in the “right direction”.
Source: Al Jazeera