Greek Government Enforces Football Fan Ban

Sports | December 11, 2023, Monday // 17:00|  views


Greek football is set to witness matches devoid of spectators for the next two months as a result of heightened incidents of violence. Pavlos Marinakis, the spokesperson for the Greek government, announced the prohibition, emphasizing a crucial need to address the surge in aggression.

The spectator ban, effective until February 12, encompasses all elite Super League matches and select games involving local clubs in European tournaments. Notably, matches involving the secondary teams of major clubs like "Olympiakos," "Panathinaikos," AEK, and PAOK will also be behind closed doors.

The decision follows a recent altercation between Olympiacos and Panathinaikos fans and law enforcement during a volleyball match, leaving a police officer severely injured. Subsequently, more than 400 individuals were questioned, and an 18-year-old was arrested for launching a flare that injured the officer.

This move comes after Greek football referees announced a boycott of local championship matches due to ongoing threats and attacks against them, leading to a complete halt in games last weekend.

The government, aiming to ensure safety and order, announced plans to assess the ban's efficacy until February 12, 2024. If safety conditions remain unsatisfactory, an extension might be considered. To bolster security measures, mandatory camera usage and electronic systems at stadium entrances to identify attendees will be implemented.

Marinakis highlighted the persisting issue of criminals masquerading as fans, perpetrating serious crimes, causing injuries, and even fatalities over the years.

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Tags: greece, football, ban, violence


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