Hong Kong fined P1.4M for racial abuse

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The International Football Federation has fined the Hong Kong Football Association was fined 30,000 swiss francs (P1.4 million) for racial abuse made by its fans during last June’s friendly match against the Philippine Azkals.

 

FIFA said that the HKFA is sanctioned for breaching Articles 58, 65 (b and e) and 67 (1 and 3) of the world governing body’s Disciplinary Code after some fans threw debris and hurled racial slurs at Filipino fans during the Azkals’ 1-0 win at Mongkong Stadium.

The incident also saw a group of Hong Kong fans displaying a banner that read “Lest We Forget Manila, 8/23/10”, a reference to the Manila hostage crisis in 2010 when eight Hong Kong nationals were killed by a hostage taker inside a tourist bus at the Luneta Grandstand.

FIFA is also requiring the HKFA CHF 3,000 (P150,000) to cover the cost of the investigation that began last November.

In a statement, the Philippine Football Federation praised the decision.

“The decision shows that FIFA vigorously implements the non-discrimination provisions of the FIFA Statutes wherever the conduct is displayed and whoever the guilty party is. It also stressed the responsibility of the host Member Association for the spectators’ conduct in any friendly match within its territory,” the PFF said.

On the other hand, HKFA chief executive officer Mark Sutcliffe was “disappointed with the initial decision and the association has the right to lodge a formal appeal once more information is given.”

 

“In my opinion, the incidents were very minor in nature and there was significant provocation by a number of the Philippine players. Having said that we do not condone any acts of violence or racial discrimination and as I stated publicly before, we will implement stadium bans on any individuals convicted of an offence of this nature.,” Sutcliffe said. Manila Bulletin