Dozen killed in El Salvador stadium stampede; over 100 hospitalised
A dozen people have lost their lives and many injured following a stampede that happened during a Salvadoran league quarterfinals match between Alianza and Fas at Monumental stadium in Cuscatlan, El Salvador on Sunday, Peoples Gazette can confirm.
According to officials in the Central American country, the stampede occurred after dozens of fans tried to force their way through one of the entrance gates resulting in congestion at the gate. The match was suspended in the 16th minute after fans started waving frantically while rescuing the injured.
“The game was scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. but they closed the gate at 7 p.m. and left us outside [the stadium] with our tickets in our hands,” said Alianza fan José Ángel Penado. “People got angry. We asked them to let us in, but no. So they knocked the gate down,” officials in El Salvador said.
Latest reports from the president indicated 12 people have lost their lives and Civil Protection director Luis Amaya said an estimated 500 people have been treated at the scene while close to 100 injured people were taken to the hospital – two of whom are in critical condition.
“El Salvador is in mourning,” said a statement from the press office of Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele.
“I simply would like to express, of course, my condolences to all the people of El Salvador for this tragic incident,” FIFA President Gianni Infantino said Sunday in a speech to a World Health Organisation meeting in Geneva.
The Salvadoran Soccer Federation said it is saddened by the unfortunate event while Mauricio Arriza Chicas, National Civil Police Commissioner said his office in conjunction with the Attorney General’s Office will launch a criminal investigation into the incident.
“We are going to investigate from the ticket sales, the entries into the stadium, but especially the southern zone,” where, he said, the gate was pushed open.
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