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UEFA probes antisemitism at Maccabi Haifa game in Germany

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UEFA probes antisemitism at Maccabi Haifa game in Germany

The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) announced on Tuesday it will open an investigation into the antisemitic abuse hurled at Maccabi Haifa fans during a match against Union Berlin on Thursday.

During the UEFA Conference League match, in which Haifa lost 3-0, Union Berlin supporters made antisemitic gestures and slurs towards fans and even attempted to set fire to the Israeli flag.

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In addition, Berlin Police are also investigating one Union Berlin supporter who shouted “sieg heil” several times during the match, according to Firstpost.

UEFA said on Tuesday a UEFA Ethics and Disciplinary Inspector has been appointed to conduct a disciplinary investigation into the antisemitic incident in the Olympiastadion, which was constructed for the 1936 Berlin Olympics during the era of Nazi Germany.

In a statement released through the club’s official website on Friday, Union Berlin president Dirk Zigler issued an apology to Israeli fans.

“This behavior is shameful and we won’t tolerate it,” said Zingler. “Antisemitism is unfortunately still present in our society, which is why it also shows itself in the stadium. However, we will never tolerate discrimination in our ranks,” Zingler added.

 TJARRON CHERY (center) and Maccabi Haifa will look to continue their impressive early run in the the Conference league with a first-leg play-off round duel Neftchi Baku tonight in Azerbaijan. (credit: REUTERS) TJARRON CHERY (center) and Maccabi Haifa will look to continue their impressive early run in the the Conference league with a first-leg play-off round duel Neftchi Baku tonight in Azerbaijan. (credit: REUTERS)

German-Israeli Society Youth Forum also condemned the antisemitic attack, saying it expects “consistent action” to be taken against antisemitism in stadiums.

“The majority of Union supporters gave Maccabi a friendly welcome and celebrated the game of football with them,” the statement noted.

“However, we also expect that consistent action will be taken against anti-semitism in the stadium so that this can continue,” the forum added. Members of the German-Israeli Society Youth Forum also reported they had beers thrown at them.

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UEFA probes antisemitism at Maccabi Haifa game in Germany