Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - French sports minister blasts racist Russian chants



French sports minister blasts racist Russian chants

French sports minister blasts racist Russian chants

France’s sports minister has condemned the “inadmissible” monkey chants aimed at French players Paul Pogba and Ousmane Dembele during the international friendly against Russia in Saint Petersburg on Tuesday.

Laura Flessel, a former two-time Olympic champion in fencing, posted a message on her Twitter account on Wednesday.

“Racism has no place on the football pitch,” she said.

“We have to take action together on a European and international level to bring an end to this inadmissible behaviour.”

During the second half of France’s 3-1 victory over Russia, an AFP photographer heard monkey chants aimed at Barcelona winger Dembele, while internet users claimed to have heard Manchester United midfielder Pogba targeted.

Neither the players nor the French team management, approached by AFP, commented on the allegations, while Russian authorities said on Wednesday that they hadn’t heard anything but were prepared to look into it.

“If this information is confirmed, then of course we will study both the video replay and everything else that happened around the match,” the Russian Football Union’s security committee head Vladimir Markin was quoted as saying by Sport Express.

“And after that, we will give our assessment.”

But his RFU security council colleague Alexei Tolkachyov stressed they had heard nothing.

“If necessary, we are ready to study this episode. But I will repeat – we did not record anything of the kind,” Tolkachyov was quoted as saying.

Russia is under the microscope as it will host the World Cup from June 14 to July 15.

The country has also come under scrutiny after the International Olympic Committee banned Russia from last month’s Winter Games in South Korea over a state-sponsored doping programme that reached its zenith at the Sochi Olympics four years ago.

Seven World Cup matches will be held in Saint Petersburg’s 68,000-capacity stadium, including a semifinal.

Russian football has long been blighted by the scourge of racist chanting from the terraces and world football’s governing body FIFA says it is closely monitoring the situation in the country.

The Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) anti-discrimination network reported 89 racist and far-right incidents at Russian games in the 2016-17 season.

Most recently, Spartak Moscow were hit with a suspended stadium ban by the Russian Football Union over almost a minute of racist chanting directed at Lokomotiv Moscow’s Brazilian goalkeeper Guilherme Marinato earlier this month.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Siem Reap’s $18M zoo said to educate public, help wildlife

    Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium Co Ltd has invested $18 million in a zoo in Siem Reap province, which will be opened in October to educate and promote animal conservation as well as attract national and international tourists. Currently, the Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium is building the

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • $50B infrastructure plan en route

    The government’s upcoming $50 billion,10-year infrastructure master plan will provide tremendous investment opportunities for domestic and foreign entities, transport experts and economists say. Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol revealed the plan to Japanese ambassador to Cambodia Masahiro Mikami on June 15. At

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro

  • Nestle’s debut may spur dairy market

    Leading confectionery manufacturer Nestle plans to invest in Cambodia by setting up an operation in the near future, a move majorly hailed by local dairy farmers as a means of boosting the fresh milk market in the Kingdom. During a visit by a delegation led