At least 32 people have been killed and more than 60 others injured after two trains collided north of the Egyptian city of Sohag on Friday, the health ministry said.
Health authorities had dispatched 36 ambulances to the scene and casualties were being taken to local hospitals, the ministry said in a statement.
Egypt’s railway authority said the two trains collided after emergency brakes were triggered by “unknown individuals” near the city of Sohag.
The brakes caused one of the trains to stop and the other to crash into it from behind, and the authority is conducting further investigations, it said.
Egypt has one of the oldest and largest rail networks in North Africa and accidents causing casualties are common.
Official figures show that 1,793 train accidents took place in 2017 across the country.
In 2018, a passenger train derailed near the southern city of Aswan, injuring at least six people and prompting authorities to fire the chief of the country’s railways.
In the same year, President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi said the government lacks about 250 billion Egyptian pounds, or $14.1 billion, to overhaul the run-down rail system. El-Sisi spoke a day after a passenger train collided with a cargo train, killing at least 12 people, including a child.
A year earlier, two passenger trains collided just outside the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria, killing 43 people. In 2016, at least 51 people were killed when two commuter trains collided near Cairo.
Egypt’s deadliest train crash took place in 2002, when over 300 people were killed when fire erupted in speeding train traveling from Cairo to southern Egypt.
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