Ukraine says U.K. press racism allegations "invented"

Reuters

Tue, 29 May 12:01:00 2012

Ukraine on Tuesday denied charges of racism levelled at it in the British press and said they had been dreamed up to discredit the former Soviet republic during the European Championship it is co-hosting next month with Poland.

The allegations were an "invented and mythical problem", said Ukrainian foreign ministry spokesman Oleh Voloshyn.

"You can criticise Ukrainian society for a lot of things ... but as far as racism is concerned European Union member countries are a long way ahead of Ukraine," he said in comments reported by Interfax news agency.

In a BBC Panorama programme aired on Monday former England international Sol Campbell warned England fans not to travel to Euro 2012 because of the threat of racism and violence.

Campbell, who played 73 times for England and appeared at six major tournaments, said: "Stay at home, watch it on TV. Don't even risk it ... because you could end up coming back in a coffin."

Campbell's comments follow announcements from the families of two black England players who said they would not go to the championship.

The BBC documentary filmed in Poland and Ukraine investigated violence and racism at football matches in the two host countries.

It contained footage of fans giving Nazi salutes, taunting black players with monkey noises, anti-Semitic chants and a group of Asian students being attacked at the Metalist Stadium in Kharkiv, one of the four Ukrainian cities which will be hosting group matches.

 

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  1. Gotta say I agree with Sol Campbell on this one, they­ are pretty hostile with regard to any ethnic minority­ over there and seem to think that they are something­ special. Not forgetting the fact that the gangster­ culture and organised crime is rife and if you are not­ shrewd or streetwise you will get robbed or your­ identity stolen probably within hours of landing.

    From Stephen, on Sat 9 Jun 18:02
  2. platini would prefare the competition be played in the­ hymalayers rather than great britain.isnt that some­ kind of racism?.

    From Harry, on Tue 29 May 13:55
  3. Will they also say it was just 'coincidence' or­ 'misfortune' when some of the their nationals,­ who appear to be very much identikit homicidal maniacs­ in the making, machine-gun down or machete up the few­ black people who're foolish enough to believe the­ official public relations spin that they'll be safe­ watching football matches in the Ukraine?

    From weary of spin, on Tue 29 May 12:29
  4. There must be a lot of sand in the Ukraine because all­ those in authority have managed to bury their head in­ it. It was a little late in the day for Panorama to­ bring these issues up, unlike the programme that went­ out on the eve of the World Cup hosting selections.­ We'll have to wait and see if there really is a­ problem or people really do just 'point' and­ shout 'sieg heil' to emphasise their pointing.

    From Joe, on Tue 29 May 12:28
  5. Riiiiiight. So I suppose the BBC "invented"­ the video footage that they showed in Panorama. LOL.

    From P, on Tue 29 May 12:22
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