“The recurrence of scenes of violence by police forces against Vitória fans during the games that take place at the D. Afonso Henriques Stadium is intolerable”, said the president of the General Assembly of Vitória, Belmiro Pinto dos Santos, quoted by “Guimarães Digital “.
The president of the General Assembly of Vitória, Belmiro Pinto dos Santos, reacted to the incidents that marked the clash with Puskás Akadémia – from the first leg of the second qualifying round of the Conference League (3-0) – at half-time. It should be remembered that the PSP detained a fan who is prevented from entering venues.
“It is intolerable the recurrence of scenes of violence by police forces against Vitória fans during the games that take place at the D. Afonso Henriques Stadium”, he began by saying, quoted by “Guimarães Digital”.
“In the sports phenomenon, with a special focus on football, players commit excesses, coaches, managers and fans, in a very special physical and emotional space, also commit them. However, the police forces cannot fail to interpret the phenomenon and adapt security strategies to the particular characteristics of the place and the people and goods that are intended to be protected”, he continued.
“Inside the D. Afonso Henriques Stadium we have witnessed the police intervention in an intimidating way that is not suitable for avoiding confrontation and violence. to see children crying, fearing for their physical integrity and that of their families”, says Belmiro Pinto dos Santos, who says it is “imperative that those responsible for the police leadership and the Internal Administration review and correct the strategies carried out at the D. Afonso Henriques Stadium , thus avoiding a misfortune that they themselves are obliged to avoid”, he concluded.
The “Association Vitória Semper”, of supporters of the Minho emblem, also reacted to the clashes, in a statement. Read in full:
I – The present communiqué, above all, is filled with a deep sadness. Sadness to see how Victorian supporters are repeatedly treated as outlaws, vandals, being cataloged differently from other football supporters.
II – In fact, what happened yesterday at the D. Afonso Henriques stadium was inadmissible, in no way honoring the forces of order of a state that claims to be by law. This will deserve our repudiation, our indignation, but, at the same time, it will redouble our strength in the fight against the persecutory treatment that Vitóri Sport Clube fans have deserved in their own home.
III – We confess our astonishment at the strategic way in which the forces of order were placed. In a challenge in which there were no opposing supporters, placing a battalion next to the Victorians sounded like provocation and premeditation. Unfortunately, our fears were confirmed at half-time.
IV – Indeed, from a situation that should be resolved with common sense and good words, it escalated into a conflict worthy of the Gaza Strip. A conflict in which one party pointed guns at women and children, which could trigger a tragedy. A conflict in which one party hit indiscriminately, without looking at whom, with sticks raised. A conflict in which hatred against those who fill the bench was always present.
V – We regret that Vitória fans are the guinea pigs, not to mention punching bags, of the police forces. We regret that these scenes are only seen in Guimarães. But we also note the reverential fear with which the same forces of (dis)order enter and act in the stadiums of other clubs, always with the fear of creating riots. On the contrary, D. Afonso Henriques looks like the playground for those who want to vent their daily frustrations and show service to their bosses.
VI – To our direction, we exhort you not to be silent! Let him defend the Victorians tooth and nail. That he ask for the meetings he deems convenient, including at the Ministry of Internal Affairs. In addition to all financial and economic goals, it will be important for all Victorians to feel safe and secure in their home. It is important to avoid these treatments of gratuitous and discretionary violence by those whose mission is to protect them.
VII – The next European game in Guimarães will be, most likely, against the Croatians of Hajduk Split. As it is true that the Croatian cheerleading squad is one of the most violent in Europe and that they will be accompanied by the organized group from Benfica, No Name Boys, we urge you, from now on, to draw up a careful security plan. So that there is no tragedy, so that there are no battered and offended Victorians…or worse, vote to pay the righteous for sinners!