Brazil fan violence causes concern

Brazil has downplayed risk of violence.
By Justin Salhani   |   Dec. 10, 2013 at 3:44 AM

Dec. 10 (UPI) -- A recent video of Brazilian fans kicking, beating and using metal bars to strike supporters of a rival team has gone viral, pushing officials to quickly assure people coming to the 2014 World Cup that they won't experience such violence next summer.

"We can assure that the safety of this event will be guaranteed," said Andrei Augusto Passos Rodrigues, one of the Brazilian government's officials in charge of security during major events. "The lamentable scenes such as the ones that happened yesterday will not be repeated."

Violence in Brazil has been a problem at soccer matches, with 30 deaths reported just this year. A referee in a village match stabbed and killed a player last July following a heated argument. The referee was then stoned and decapitated by the crowd.

Following the viral images, international soccer organization FIFA released the following statement: "This is very sad for Brazilian football. FIFA and the local organizing committee condemn any form of violence and such incidents should not happen in any football stadium."

"For the 2014 FIFA World Cup a very comprehensive security concept is in place in an integrated operation between private and public security authorities to ensure the safety for fans, players and any other stakeholder involved in the event," the governing body said "The concept has worked very well during the FIFA Confederations Cup and is built on models used at previous FIFA World Cups."



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