Rousseff condemns racism in Brazilian football
By Ben Tavener, Sunday, March 09, 2014
SAO PAULO - Brazil`s President Dilma Rousseff has publicly condemned two recent incidents in which figures from Brazilian football were racially abused.
In a sequence of messages on her twitter account, Ms Rousseff said that Brazilian football had been "stained" by these events, and that racism was "inadmissible" in a country with the world’s biggest black population outside Africa.
Marcos Arouca da Silva, a defensive midfielder for Santos football, made headlines when football fans at a game between Santos and rivals Mogi Mirim hurled abuse at him, chanting “big monkey.”
This has resulted in the Mogi Mirim stadium being handed a ban by the São Paulo state Football Federation that forbids it from hosting any games at their stadium, the "Romildão", until an investigation into the incident and any subsequent disciplinary process is concluded.
Arouca released a statement labelling the episode as “unacceptable,” emphasizing that there was “no place” in football for racism.
In a second incident, referee Márcio Chagas reported he had been subject to a racist attack following a game in the country`s southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul.
“Márcio and Arouca have all my solidarity, and that of all Brazilians. It is inadmissible that Brazil, the biggest black nation outside Africa, should live with scenes of racism,” President Rousseff wrote on her official Twitter account.
“Let`s stand up to racism! I have agreed with the UN and FIFA that our #WorldCupofWorldCups will also be a #Cup for Peace and a #CupAgainstRacism,” she continued.
Back in February fans at a Copa Libertadores match between Brazilian club Cruzeiro and Peru`s Real Garcilaso chanted “monkey” at black Brazilian midfielder Paulo César Fonseca, better known as “Tinga”, in the Peruvian city of Huancayo.
In a little over three months South America`s largest country, Brazil, will host the football World Cup, spread across 12 cities.
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