CLARIN (Argentina) NEW YORK TIMES (U.S.)
BUENOS AIRES - To combat violence in soccer, both on and off the field, a new law in Argentina will require each top league team to have a security chief who reports directly to the Ministry of Defense, Clarin reports.
The role must be filled by someone who has experience from either the Argentine military or the police. These new security attachés will be the club’s official liaison with the police during matches, and at all other times when necessary.
The same law mandates other changes to match-time security in soccer-violence prone Argentina. Within two years, 50 percent of fans at games should be seated - in four years, all fans should be provided with individual seating.
The law also gives stadiums no more than one year to make sure that all stadium entrances are controlled by metal detectors, Clarin reports.
Soccer violence has been a major problem in Argentina for years. It includes violence among fans, but also fans attacking the players on the pitch. Sometimes fans attack players of the team they support as punishment for poor performance, according to the New York Times.
In contrast to other countries with histories of soccer violence, Argentina’s offenders often have ties to politicians, the soccer clubs themselves and the police. More than 100 people have been killed in soccer violence in Argentina over the past 12 years.
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Sreemanti Sengupta is a freelance writer, poet, and media studies lecturer based in Kolkata.
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