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Turkish, Portuguese police expect no troublemakers in Geneva at Euro 2008 opener

Turkish, Portuguese police expect no troublemakers in Geneva at Euro 2008 opener

Turkish and Portuguese police officials are not expecting any troublemakers when the two countries play each other Saturday in the opening match of the European Championship.
The officials said Friday that officers from both countries were patrolling the Geneva International Airport and other parts of the city to stop any hooligans who might attempt to enter Switzerland, but added it was unlikely to have undesired visitors anyway.
Mustafa Aygun, the head of a 21-man Turkish police delegation in Austria and Switzerland, said Turkish fans with a bad record were not allowed to buy tickets for Euro 2008. He said they were sure those fans were not flying to either of the two host countries during June.
"We already checked the list of people who applied for tickets. Troublesome people will not be coming here," Aygun said.
Most Turkish fans expected to make the trip will be from among the 3 million or so that are living in neighboring Germany. They proved a reliable supporting base during friendly preparations for Europe's top football tournament.
There are many other Turks scattered across Europe _ mainly in the Netherlands and France _ including a small Turkish community in Switzerland. Aygun said they mainly relied on European authorities for information on Turkish expatriates since they don't have any direct knowledge on them.
The Portuguese community in Switzerland is much more visible than the Turkish one. Close to 200,000 Portuguese are living in the country, most of whom came in earlier decades to benefit from the economic boom. Abot a third of them are in or around Geneva, where Saturday's game will be played.
Paulo Gomes, the head of the Portuguese police delegation at the championship, said there was no exit-ban order on any Portuguese citizens due to hooliganism. Citing information obtained from fan groups, Gomes said the Portuguese community in Switzerland was also not likely to cause any problems.
"There is no known (Portuguese) troublemaker who intends to come to Switzerland," Gomes said at Geneva Police headquarters.
Local police commander Christian Cudre-Mauroux said foreign officers from the two countries as well as the Czech Republic were in Geneva mainly to ease communication between the local police and fans at times of heightened tensions in city's main squares, where people will gather to watch the games.
A total of 90,000 fans who don't have tickets can watch the matches at a fan zone in the city center and at a separate camping site at Bout-du-Monde.
The Stade de Geneve will host three games during the tournament. The other two games will involve the Czech Republic playing both Turkey and Portugal in Group A.


Updated : 2021-06-21 15:05 GMT+08:00