Italy condemns soccer fans' fascist salute

Italian football federation condemns group of traveling Italy fans who gave fascist salutes before a game against Israel in Haifa.

Elad Benari ,

Soccer (illustration)
Soccer (illustration)

Italian football federation President Carlo Tavecchio on Thursday "strongly condemned" a group of traveling Italy fans who gave fascist salutes before Monday's 3-1 win against Israel in Haifa, The Associated Press reports.

In a telephone call with the Israeli ambassador to Italy, Francesco Maria Talo, Tavecchio said "we hope the relevant authorities can determine as soon as possible what happened and identify those responsible."

The incident occurred during the national anthems of the 2018 World Cup qualifier and was reported on a website of Italian Jews, according to AP.

It is the latest in several recent anti-Israel incidents in the soccer world.

In late August, Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) flags were seen during a soccer match in France between Israeli Beitar Jerusalem and Saint-Étienne.

A week earlier, supporters of Glasgow’s Celtic Football Club waved PLO flags during their Champions League qualifier against Israel’s Hapoel Be'er Sheva, prompting the Union of European Football (UEFA) to launch disciplinary proceedings against Celtic.

Last year, UEFA considered punitive actions against the Belgian Charleroi soccer team, after Charleroi fans taunted Beitar Jerusalem fans during a game with Nazi salutes and anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli chants.