Violence between fans hurts Mexican soccer league

Photo: AP

Mexican authorities are investigating the spiral of violence between fans in a soccer game that left, according to the latest data, 26 injured, three of them seriously, in the city of Querétaro, the capital city of the state, in central México.

After almost 12 hours of speculation, and the profuse dissemination of strong videos with violent scenes on social networks, this Sunday, the state governor, Mauricio Kuri, indicated that 26 people, 24 men and two women, were hospitalized.

He detailed that three have already been discharged, 10 are reported out of danger, another 10 are reported as delicate, while the remaining three are in serious condition.

“It is a tragedy because, although there are no deaths, we cannot say that it is not a tragedy and we cannot allow it to become politicized,” said Kuri during a Sunday press conference.

The Saturday match between the Querétaro-Atlas teams, current champion in México and part of the ninth closing day of Mexican soccer, was suspended as a result of acts of violence that ended with the invasion of the field by fans.

The fight between fans of both teams, started in the stands, grew and ended up on the field, causing the players to take refuge in the locker room and the referee to end the match, actions that all professional soccer clubs in México regretted.

No deaths

The strong images published in photographs and videos on social networks suggested, after the pitched battle between fans of both teams, there was even talk of a deceased. Without specifying sources, they mentioned “unofficially 17 dead.”

But, hours after the incidents, the Coordination of Civil Protection of the State of Querétaro indicated in an initial report that the confrontation had left at least 22 people injured.

This Sunday, the Secretary of Health of Querétaro, María Martina Pérez, reported that the three patients reported as serious were recuperating “favorably”, despite the fact that in videos that circulated on networks they were seen severely injured and immobile and in some cases with profuse hemorrhages.

“They are stable, they are alive, the image could say something else, but they are alive. So far we have not had any deaths,” she assured.

However, to clear up any doubt about possible deaths, Kuri stressed that the State Prosecutor’s Office opened a series of investigation files for the events in the stadium, including one for attempted murder, and said that toxicological tests will be applied to who were involved.

These violent actions that have become recurrent in Mexican soccer, occur in a country that registered 33,308 homicides in 2021 after the two most violent years in its history, under the mandate of Andrés Manuel López Obrador, with 34,690 murder victims in 2019 and 34,554 in 2020.

Insufficient security

With previous clashes between fans of the two clubs making the Saturday encounter a high-risk match, Kuri acknowledged this Sunday that the security in the stadium “was insufficient” and the one that was there did not act with the necessary promptness. And he recalled that security inside the stadium is the responsibility of Club Querétaro and Liga MX.

Despite this statement, the state secretary of Citizen Security, Miguel Ángel Contreras, affirmed that there was a deployment of state police before, during and after the match, and affirmed that the private security company responsible for the event “did not carry enough staffing for it.

Kuri, who this Monday will meet with the president of Liga MX, Mikel Arriola, announced that they will look for those responsible for these acts and “what has to be punished will be punished, (and) what has to be corrected will be corrected.”

On Saturday, shortly before midnight, Arriola announced that the three remaining games of the ninth day of the Clausura of Mexican soccer, which would be played this Sunday, would be suspended, in solidarity with the victims of Saturday’s violent acts.

“The league condemns the events at the La Corregidora stadium (in Querétaro), it is a situation of serious violence that forces us to act energetically against those responsible,” he said in a video broadcast on social networks.

The violent confrontation between fans, also gave the guidelines for the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH), considering “the seriousness of the facts,” to report this Sunday that “it will initiate an ex officio complaint to investigate and determine the responsibility of the authorities involved and defend the victims to ensure their access to justice and reparation.”

The CNDH said that although the Disciplinary Commission of the Mexican Football Federation (FEMEXFUT) and Liga MX reported on their social networks that “they will initiate a thorough investigation of what happened, it cannot be overlooked that the main responsibility lies with the authorities,” obliged to guarantee the safety of people in massive events both inside and outside the facilities where they were held.

The Yucatan Times
Newsroom



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