Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Putin says safe World Cup crucial to Russia’s image




Putin says safe World Cup crucial to Russia’s image

Russian President Vladimir Putin poses for a picture with Alina Zagitova (left) and Evgenia Medvedeva, medal-winning skaters at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, at an awards ceremony at the Kremlin on Wednesday. AFP
Russian President Vladimir Putin poses for a picture with Alina Zagitova (left) and Evgenia Medvedeva, medal-winning skaters at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, at an awards ceremony at the Kremlin on Wednesday. AFP

Putin says safe World Cup crucial to Russia’s image

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday said a safe World Cup this summer would be essential for the country’s image, as the violence from Russian fans at Euro 2016 shadows preparations.

In a speech to police, Putin said that Russia, which is to host the championship for the first time, “must hold it at the highest level and most importantly, ensure maximum security for players and fans”.

“Of course you play a crucial role in achieving this aim,” Putin told police.

“I don’t doubt that at the World Cup you will also act appropriately in any given situation, in strict accordance with the law.”

He stressed that “the way this event goes and our country’s image will directly depend on your smooth, skilful work”.

The world football governing body FIFA last Friday expressed “complete trust” in Russia’s ability to ensure a safe World Cup, despite violence involving fans of Spartak Moscow in Spain during which a policeman died.

Russia will host the tournament in 11 cities from June 14 to July 15.

The lead-up has been coloured by fears of a repeat of the June 2016 rampage by Russian hooligans that erupted in the French port city of Marseille during the Euro tournament.

However, Russia has cracked down on football gangs and worked to identify hooligans seeking to attend the matches, even enlisting help from British police.

Putin has courted football fans in the past, even visiting the graveside of a Spartak Moscow fan shot dead in a mass fight with men from the Russian Caucasus in December 2010.

MOST VIEWED

  • Without shoes or a helmet, a young cyclist steals the show

    Pech Theara gripped the curved handlebars of his rusty old bike, planted his bare feet on its pedals and stormed as fast as he could towards the finish line. The odds were against him as the 13-year-old faced off against kids with nicer bikes at

  • Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville expressway on schedule

    The construction of the more than $1.9 billion Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway has not been delayed despite the Covid-19 pandemic, with more than 26 per cent of the project completed and expected to finish in about two years, according to Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of

  • Singapore group seeks $14M in damages from PPSP over ‘breach of contract’

    Singapore-based Asiatic Group (Holdings) Ltd is seeking a minimum of $14.4 million relief from Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX)-listed Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) for allegedly breaching a power plant joint venture (JV) agreement. Asiatic Group’s wholly-owned Colben System Pte Ltd and 95 per

  • Over 110 garment factories close

    A government official said on November 22 that at least 110 garment factories had closed in the first nine months of the year and left more than 55,000 workers without jobs – but union leaders worry those numbers could be much higher. Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training undersecretary

  • PM dispels lockdown rumours, gifts masks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on November 12 denied rumours that he will lock down the country in response to increased Covid-19 fears, referring to them as propaganda aimed at destabilising the country. In a Facebook post, he said some people had spread rumours that the government

  • SilkAir adds flight to Phnom Penh schedule

    Silkair (Singapore) Pte Ltd is increasing its flight frequency between Phnom Penh and Singapore with a third weekly flight on Saturdays, according to Cambodia Airports’ Facebook page. The other flights offered are on Tuesdays and Sundays, with an estimated Phnom Penh arrival time at 5:35pm