About 200 youngsters detained after riots in Anderlecht
26 May 2008
BRUSSELS – Nearly 200 youngsters were detained during riots in the Brussels borough of Anderlecht on Friday evening where immigrant youngsters clashed with supporters of Anderlecht Football Club.
Fourteen police officers were injured. Two are still receiving medical treatment. Twelve rioters were also hurt.
Most of the youngsters were minors and were released in the course of the night.
Earlier in the week, immigrant youngsters used the Internet to unveil their plans to fight with Anderlecht supporters.
There was a massive police presence in the Brussels borough of Anderlecht. The police were deployed between the two groups in an attempt to keep them separate.
Around 7 pm, a group of Anderlecht supporters tried to make their way to the Sint-Guido metro station where immigrant youngsters had gathered.
A hundred and fifty police succeeded in keeping the two groups apart, but the police had to charge on several occasions.
Shortly after 8 pm, Anderlecht supporters again clashed with the police.
Clashes continued throughout the evening. Brussels police also closed four metro stations for the duration of the unrest.
Calm only returned during the early hours.
The clashes led to considerable damage on the De Lindeplein in Anderlecht. Several shop windows were shattered.
A call box and a bus shelter were trashed. A number of cars were also damaged.
The police detained 193 youngsters in order to check their identity. Most of those detained had been throwing stones.
They were released in the course of the night, but may still face prosecution.
Gerald Noon, the head of Anderlecht police, said that photographic material would be used to identify anybody who caused material damage.
The riot follows incidents last Sunday in the margin of the Belgian Cup in which Anderlecht fans clashed with immigrants.
[flandersnews.be / Expatica]
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