Belgium's police use tear gas, water cannons against Moroccan soccer fans in Brussels

Belgium
# 07 December 2022 06:15 (UTC +04:00)

Thousands of Moroccan fans took to the streets of Brussels on Tuesday to celebrate the country's victory over Spain at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, leading to violent clashes with Belgian police, a RIA Novosti correspondent said, APA reports citing Sputnik.

On Tuesday, Morocco advanced to the quarterfinals at the 2022 FIFA World Cup for the first time in the country's history after beating Spain on penalties. Morocco's national team will play Portugal on Saturday.

Soon after the match ended, hundreds of cars carrying Moroccan flags took to the streets of Brussels, home to a large Moroccan diaspora. The young fans gathered in the area of Boulevard Maurice Lemonnier, surrounded by police with special equipment. Clashes with police broke out after the fans set fire to dumpsters and began building improvised barricades.

The police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse the crowd. Most active participants of the clashes were detained, the correspondent reported.

Brussels' police significantly increased their presence on the city's streets on Tuesday following clashes on November 27 after Morocco defeated Belgium at the World Cup. Then, Moroccan fans began setting cars and dumpsters on fire and throwing rocks at police officers after a referee disallowed a goal against the Belgians. Local media reported police used water cannons and tear gas and that there were casualties. At least eleven people were arrested in Brussels and another ten in the port city of Antwerp over the clashes, according to reports.

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