Tuesday, November 13, 2007


MOSTAR, Bosnia (November 13,2007) – Several citizens and seven police officers were injured in a clash between football supporters before a match between F.C. Velez and F.C. Zrinjski in the southern Bosnian city of Mostar on 10 November.

Police patrols were dispatched to the spot immediately after the clash started but, as police officers soon turned into targets of violence, the Canton’s Special Support Unit had to be called in for assistance. They arrested 12 persons, one of whom is still in custody.

“One hour after the clash started, the police managed to control the situation,” said Ivo Usar, the Chief Adviser of the European Union Police Mission in Bosnia (EUPM) in the Mostar region.

“We cannot blame the police, as they reacted to the incident in an appropriate way and no incident whatsoever occurred during the match itself.”

As a matter of fact, 450 police officers and over 100 security guards ensured that the game took place in a peaceful atmosphere. According to Usar, the organizers of the game hold part of the responsibility of what happened in Mostar this weekend.

“The problem lays with the organizers of the match, who did not provide enough transportation.It is their responsibility to ensure that football matches do not cause any problems,” Usar said.

Besides monitoring the investigations in order to make sure that the perpetators are brought to justice, EUPM will hence also ensure that the organizers of the football match are made liable for the incident,EUPM said.

EUPM will also continue to offer its support for the establishment of a state law on prevention of violence and hooliganism, which would make all stadiums in Bosnia more secure,EUPM stated in a press release.

The Office of the International Community's High Representative in Bosnia (OHR) has also condemned the riots that broke out on Saturday and Sunday in Mostar between the football fans of Velez and Zrinjski.

”Seven police officers ended up in hospital while they tried to accordingly perform their duties. the OHR wishes them a successful recovery. We also expect the perpetrators to be brought to justice”, the OHR said.

1 comment:

Andrea said...