Senegal tries to reduce sanctions after stadium trouble

Karim Farouk, Thursday 18 Oct 2012

Senegal president gives apology and government holding ‘diplomatic talks’ to not impose heavy sanctions

Senegal try to reduce ban after stadium stampede
Senegalese football fans throw rocks at the police at Leopold Sedar Senghor stadium in Dakar October 13, 2012 (Photo: Reuters)

The Senegalese government started negotiations with the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to reduce the heavy sanctions that are likely to be imposed, following the fan riots at their Africa Cup of Nations qualifier game with Ivory Coast last Saturday.

The local supporters attacked their own players and threw missiles, stones, bottles, and firecrackers on the field at Leopold Senghor Stadium. The crowd trouble led to the termination of the game towards the second half of the game after Senegal was trailing behind 2-0.

Up to 30 people were injured, including Senegalese Sports Minister El Hadji Malick Gackou.

“We are leading diplomatic talks with the African officials to reduce sanctions that will probably hit Senegal,” Malick Gackou said, according to Senegalese daily newspaper ‘Le Soleil’.

“We have a young team that could bring us satisfaction in the future so we don’t need to sacrifice them,” he added.

The African soccer governing body immediately disqualified Senegal from the 2013 Nations Cup and is yet to decide on their sanctions, after awarding Ivory Coast the win.

Senegal president Macky Sall apologised to the Ivorian people and ordered an immediate investigation.

Senegal Football Association first vice president Louis Lamotte has resigned from his position on Wednesday saying he would give his full support to the investigators.

“I assume part of the responsibility. It’s a serious situation that had the President give his apology to Ivory Coast. What matters are not the elimination, but the incidents and what’s behind them,” he told 'Le Soleil' on Wednesday.

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