Stampede, riot at Indonesia soccer match kill 174

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(VOVWORLD) - At least 174 people were killed and 180 injured in a stampede and riot at a soccer match in Indonesia, officials said on Sunday, in one of the world’s worst stadium disasters.

Stampede, riot at Indonesia soccer match kill 174 - ảnh 1Chaos break out following the match between Arema and Persebaya on October 1, 2022. (Photo: Bola)

The country’s chief security minister, Mahfud MD, said that the stadium had been filled beyond its capacity. He said 42,000 tickets for the match between Arema FC and Persebaya Surabaya had been issued for a stadium that is only supposed to hold 38,000 people. 

The Indonesian government apologized for the incident and pledged to conduct an investigation. Meanwhile, Zainudin Amali, Indonesia’s sports minister, told KompasTV that the ministry would re-evaluate safety at football matches, including considering not allowing spectators in stadiums.

East Java police chief Nico Afinta said after Arema FC lost 3-2 to Persebaya Surabaya around 10 pm on Saturday, the frustrated supporters of the losing home team invaded the pitch, forcing officers to fire tear gas in an  attempt to control the situation. This triggered the stampede and cases of suffocation. 

World soccer's governing body FIFA specifies in its safety regulations that no firearms or "crowd control gas" should be carried or used by stewards or police.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo said authorities must thoroughly evaluate security at matches, adding that he hoped this would be "the last soccer tragedy in the nation."

He ordered the Football Association of Indonesia to suspend all games in the Indonesian top league BRI Liga 1 until an investigation had been completed.