Egypt punishes train disaster ‘selfie medics’
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Egypt punishes train disaster ‘selfie medics’

Ambulance crew members faced online uproar after taking photos in front of deadly train wreck

Egyptian officials and emergency personnel remove the wreckage of a collision between two trains on August 11, 2017 near Khorshid station in Alexandria. (AFP PHOTO / KHALED DESOUKI)
Egyptian officials and emergency personnel remove the wreckage of a collision between two trains on August 11, 2017 near Khorshid station in Alexandria. (AFP PHOTO / KHALED DESOUKI)

Egypt’s health ministry has punished six medics who took selfies in front of a deadly train wreck by transferring them to a remote part of the country, it said Saturday, following an online uproar.

Two trains collided Friday near the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, killing 41 people in one of the deadliest such accidents in the North African country.

Pictures of an ambulance crew taking selfie pictures in front the wreckage sparked anger on social media, with one Twitter user posting a photograph with a hashtag reading: “conscience in a coma.”

Dubbed the “Selfie Medics” by Twitter users, they faced calls for punishment on social media.

The health ministry’s director of emergency services Ahmed al-Ansari said six members of the ambulance crew have been transferred to the western Siwa oasis as punishment.

It was “inappropriate conduct,” he said.

Egypt’s ambulance services had been hailed in the country in the past for their often dangerous jobs tending to demonstrators during the Arab Spring protests of 2011 and their violent aftermath.

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