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Rule of LawGermany

Euro 2024 host Germany pleased with security so far

June 17, 2024

German officials praised the security situation at the start of the Euro 2024 football championship. But police did break up a violent incident between Serbia and England fans.

Police outside a stadium in Munich
Police were deployed at matches across GermanyImage: Matthias Koch/picture alliance

Germany's Interior Ministry said it was satisfied with the security situation over the first weekend of the Euro 2024 championship.

"The security measures are working," Interior Ministry spokesperson Maximilian Kall said on Monday.

He said that "so far, there have been no surprising events."

However, incidents did occur away from the pitch. In Saxony-Anhalt, police shot a man who fatally stabbed a guest at a viewing party. In Hamburg, police also shot a man wielding a hammer near where Dutch soccer fans were gathering, although authorities dismissed any connection to the Euros.

Police respond to Serbia-England clash

Kall nevertheless pointed to an isolated incident of violence between England and Serbia fans ahead of their match on Sunday.

"Of course there were incidents at the weekend, for example ... with hooligans yesterday in Gelsenkirchen, but that was a situation the police there tackled quickly and above all were prepared for," Kall said.

Police said a group of Serbia supporters were eating at a restaurant when a group of England fans tried to get in.

Footage posted to social media showed men throwing chairs at each other outside the restaurant, which was decorated with Serbian flags.

Police outside a restaurant in Gelsenkirchen
Hooligans clashed at a restaurant before the England v Serbia in GelsenkirchenImage: K. Hoeft/frontalvision/picture alliance

Senior Gelsenkirchen police official Peter Both told reporters that seven Serbia fans and one England fan were detained.

He added that one fan was taken to hospital with a head injury, but he later discharged himself in order to watch the game.

On Monday, an England fans' group called for an "urgent and thorough" review of transport arrangements after spectators faced delays getting home after the match.

"To see fans stranded in Gelsenkirchen Hauptbahnhof (central station) three hours after the game has finished due to transport problems at a major tournament is quite simply ridiculous," the Free Lions Fan Embassy said.

zc/lo (dpa, AP)