ADL Outraged And Concerned Over Severe Disturbances During Tel Aviv Soccer Match

Jerusalem, March 7, 2012 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) expressed outrage and concern over severe and violent disturbances, and racist catcalls during a soccer game between Hapoel Tel Aviv and Maccabi Tel Aviv yesterday.

According to media reports, during the soccer game, players from Hapoel Tel Aviv attempted to attack the referee, fans acted with unprecedented violence against players from the opposing team and sang Holocaust songs.

The ADL Israel Office issued the following statement:

We see with gravity that a football game in Israel has turned into a violent brawl in which racist catcalls and Holocaust songs are being heard. This behavior has no place in society.

Threats, violence and racism hurt the principles of fair game and stand in contradiction of the essence of sport as a uniting element and a sphere in which all feel safe and equal. Yesterday's events should be considered as a warning sign to the Israeli public. We call upon the Football Association and the Israel Police to make sure that those responsible will be punished to the full extent of the law.

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

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Monique Gray Smith