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    Football fans on Manezhnaya Square in Moscow

    Factbox: Clashes in Moscow and St. Petersburg involving football fans

    © RIA Novosti. Dmitry Korobeinikov
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    An unsanctioned rally of about 5,000 people, mainly football fans and members of nationalist organizations, resulted in brawls and clashes with police.

    An unsanctioned rally of about 5,000 people, mainly football fans and members of nationalist organizations, resulted in brawls and clashes with police.

    An unsanctioned rally to demand investigation into the death of 28-year-old Spartak Moscow fan Yegor Sviridov, killed earlier this week in a fight between football fans and internal migrants from the North Caucasus, gathered on central Moscow's Manezh Square on Saturday. The protestors ignored police demands to disperse and clashes broke out.

    The rioters chanted nationalist slogans and burned firecrackers and flares. Later they started moving towards the Manezh exhibition complex in an attempt to break through police cordons. At least 29 people were injured in clashes.

    The following is information on major incidents involving football fans in Russia's two largest cities, Moscow and St. Petersburg, in 2002-2010.

    * Russia's worst incident involving football fans took place on June 9, 2002, also on Moscow's Manezh Square and in nearby streets. After Russian national team was defeated by Japan in a World Cup match, hundreds of angry fans, who gathered to watch the game on street screens, broke at least 36 shop windows, several trolleybuses and set almost 100 cars ablaze. Police had to use weapons to stop the crowd.

    The riots left one person dead and 75 injured, 49 of them seriously. The Moscow government resolved to ban broadcasting football matches in streets after the incident.

    * In the most recent violence, one person was injured in a clash between fans of Zenit St. Petersburg and Dynamo Moscow on August 13, 2010. A group of about 70 Zenit supporters burst into a train on which fans of the Moscow club were travelling to support their team during a match in Russia's second largest city.

    * On November 1, 2008, Moscow police detained about 200 fans to prevent large-scale clashes between supporters of rival Moscow clubs of Spartak and CSKA. More than 3,000 police were deployed to prevent violence as about 60,000 fans gathered for the game at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium.

    * On June 22, 2008, thousands of football fans in the two cities were loudly celebrating Russia's bronze at Euro 2008. A month earlier, large-scale celebrations took place in St. Petersburg as Zenit won the UEFA Cup. No violence or vandalism took place and no detentions were reported.

    * Zenith was the second Russian team to win the UEFA trophy. On May 19, 2005 large-scale celebrations of CSKA fans over their team's victory in the UEFA Cup resulted in 84 detentions, but the celebrations were largely peaceful.

    * In April 17, 2005, 132 people, mainly fans of CSKA Moscow, were detained in St. Petersburg ahead of the team's match against Zenit. They were apprehended mostly for drunkenness and hooliganism.

    * In 2004 only three minor incidents, involving football fans, were registered. On August 29, several fans broke through police cordons to the field and a five-minute brawl involving fans, players and coaches of two rival teams, Saturn and CSKA, took place. The incident also caused much more serous clashes on grandstands. There were no reports of casualties or detentions.

    Another clash between football fans took place in southwest Moscow on April 4. The cause of the brawl is unknown, but 40 angry fans were detained.

    * The year 2003 was the calmest one with only one minor incident reported.

     

    MOSCOW, December 12 (RIA Novosti)

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