FOOTBALL: 174 football fans killed in tear gas riot during league match in Indonesia

In Indonesia, at least 174 football fans have died in the riots following Arema FC's league match against Persebaya Surabaya

In Indone­sia, at least 174 foot­ball fans have died in the riots fol­low­ing Are­ma FC’s league match against Perse­baya Surabaya.

The num­ber of fans killed in a post-match pitch inva­sion at Malang’s Kan­jurhan Sta­di­um con­tin­ues to climb, local media reports have report­ed. Many fans were tak­en to local hos­pi­tals in Kangjul­han and Wawa Husada.

East Java police chief Nico Afin­ta said about 180 peo­ple were injured. Two police offi­cers are believed to have died in the inci­dent. Akhmad Hadi­an Luki­ta, chair­man of PT Liga Indone­sia Baru (LIB), said: “We are con­cerned and deeply regret­ful about this inci­dent.” We send our con­do­lences and hope that this is a valu­able les­son for all of us.”

Perse­baya’s offi­cial Twit­ter account post­ed on Sat­ur­day night: “The extend­ed fam­i­ly of Perse­baya is deeply sad­dened by the loss of life in the match between Are­ma FC and Perse­baya.” No life is worth foot­ball. We pray for the repose of the soul of the vic­tims and hope that the fam­i­lies left behind will find strength. ”

All remain­ing BRI Liga 1 games sched­uled for this week have been can­celed fol­low­ing the inci­dent, with the Indone­sian Foot­ball Fed­er­a­tion con­firm­ing that Are­ma will not play the rest of the season.

Thou­sands of Are­ma FC fans entered the pitch from the stands. Local police and sev­er­al mem­bers of the Indone­sian Nation­al Army were then mobi­lized to step up secu­ri­ty and perse­baya play­ers were escort­ed off the pitch to safety.

Local media report­ed a brawl broke out between secu­ri­ty forces and fans on the pitch, with objects being thrown before the secu­ri­ty forces start­ed using tear gas.

It is said that this caused fans to pan­ic and many fell to the ground and were inad­ver­tent­ly tram­pled by oth­ers as they tried to escape the gas.

It is said that there are many fans who have dif­fi­cul­ty breath­ing from inhal­ing gas and who have lost con­scious­ness on the pitch.

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