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Eleven dead, 98 injured after train derails in Egypt

CAIRO: Eleven people were killed and 98 injured in a train accident in Egypt’s Qalioubia province north of Cairo.

The train was heading from Cairo to the Nile Delta city of Mansoura when four carriages derailed at 1:54 PM, about 40 kms (25 miles) north of Cairo, Egyptian National Railways said in a short statement.

The cause of the accident is being investigated, it added. More than 50 ambulances took the injured to three hospitals in the province, the health ministry said. Videos on social media showed carriages overturned and passengers escaping to safety along the railway.

The derailing is the latest of several recent railway crashes in Egypt. At least 20 people were killed and nearly 200 were injured in March when two trains collided near Tahta, about 440 kms (275 miles) south of Cairo.

Fifteen people were injured this month when two train carriages derailed near Minya al-Qamh city, about 70 kms north of Cairo.

Egypt’s transportation minister Kamel El-Wazir, a former army general, has faced calls to resign from some Egyptians on social media. He has rejected these and vowed to keep working on developing the ageing rail network.

In February 2019 an unmanned locomotive slammed into a barrier inside Cairo’s main Ramses railway station, causing a huge explosion and a fire that killed at least 25 people. That crash prompted the then-transportation minister to resign.

Egypt’s deadliest train crash was in 2002, when more than 370 people were killed after a fire broke out in an overnight train travelling from Cairo to southern Egypt.