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At least 174 killed after riot breaks out at football match

Marcus Chan

Published 
| Last updated 

At least 174 killed after riot breaks out at football match

At least 174 people have been killed after a riot broke out at a football match in Indonesia. 

The incident happened at the game between Arema and Persebaya Surabaya at the Kanjuruhan Stadium in East Java. 

According to reports from the local media, the riot happened after Persebaya Surabaya’s 3-2 win, and Arema fans went onto the pitch after seeing their side lose. 

It was reported that a number of players from the Arema team were still present on the pitch when the violence started. 

Local police fired tear gas into the crowd and a stampede followed. 

Fans were seen carrying people who seemed unconscious as the stadium descended into utter chaos. 

This was possibly one of the world’s worst ever stadium disasters as more than 300 people were rushed to hospitals nearby. However, many died on the way or during treatment. 

Nico Afinta, the East Java police chief said during a news conference on Sunday: “We have already done a preventive action before finally firing the tear gas as (fans) began to attack the police, acting anarchically and burning vehicles.”

Persebaya Surabaya said on their official Twitter account: “Persebaya's extended family deeply mourns the loss of life after the Arema FC vs Persebaya match. No single life is worth football. We pray for the victims and may the families left behind be given strength.”

Football's governing body, FIFA, states that no "crowd control gas" should be carried or used by stewards or police at matches.

As a result of this incident, all remaining games in the BRI Ligue 1 have been postponed and the Indonesian Football Association have announced that Arema will not host any more games for the remainder of the season.

A former coach for Indonesia’s futsal team, Justinus Lhaksana has claimed that this wasn’t the first time stadium violence has happened in the country, stating that fans get on the pitch 'almost every weekend'. 

He told Sky News: “This is the not first time we have had deadly casualties. But usually it's one or two people who die after a match.

“I’m very sad the right solution was not found way before this happened.

“This is not a clash between two rivalries - this is just a clash between disappointed fans and police.” 

Featured Image Credit: Twitter

Topics: Football

Marcus Chan
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