Italian police probe anti-Semitic posters aimed at Lazio and Napoli fans

AFP - [email protected]
Italian police probe anti-Semitic posters aimed at Lazio and Napoli fans
AS Roma playing Lazio in 2016. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Italian police are investigating after AS Roma supporters allegedly distributed anti-Semitic leaflets in the north of the city on Wednesday to coincide with the anniversary of bitter city rivals Lazio.


The leaflets, signed by a group of Roma ultras, were posted overnight in the area where Lazio supporters gathered to celebrate their 119th anniversary.

The text of the flyers read: "Lazio, Napoli and Israel, same colours, same flags. S**t."

It comes just over a year after Lazio ultras posted anti-Semitic stickers depicting Holocaust victim Anne Frank in a Roma jersey in the Stadio Olimpico.

Rome mayor Virginia Raggi condemned the incident on Wednesday. "I firmly condemned the anti-Semitic posters which appeared in Rome," she wrote on Twitter. "Football cannot be division and intolerance."

Raggi also denounced earlier clashes with Lazio supporters that left at least ten police officers injured. "Unacceptable violence against police officers by ultras. Rome cannot become a theatre for the madness of some criminals."

READ ALSO: Police injured as Lazio's 119th anniversary celebrations turn violent

The skirmishes took place at Piazza della Liberta where up to 2,500 Lazio fans gathered late on Tuesday at the spot of the club's foundation.Shortly after midnight, an estimated 300 fans, with their faces covered, broke away from the main group and began throwing bottles and other objects at police, who responded with tear gas and water cannons.

Tensions are running high in Italy after violence before Inter Milan's league game against Napoli on December 26th in the San Siro, which was also overshadowed by racist chanting. A 39-year-old Inter Milan fan was killed after being struck by a car.

There were also clashes in the Italian capital before Lazio's Europa League game against German club Eintracht Frankfurt last month. 

READ ALSO: Racism is still rife - and unpunished - in Italian football

Napoli's defender Kalidou Koulibaly, who was subjected to racist insults by Inter Milan fans before receiving a red card during a match on December 26th. Photo: Marco Bertorello/AFP



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