Honduras soccer riot leaves 3 dead, at least 10 injured, officials say

August 18, 2019

At least three people were killed and 10 were injured after riots broke out Saturday night in the capital of Honduras before a soccer game between two rival teams, officials said.

The violence erupted outside the National Stadium in Tegucigalpa before the match between the Motagua and Olympia soccer clubs, after crowds threw objects at the Motagua team bus. Three players on the team were injured when the glass windows shattered, according to the team.

Spectators react from tear gas after three people died in riots before a soccer match when the fans attacked a bus carrying one of the teams, at the National Stadium in Tegucigalpa, Honduras August 17, 2019.
(REUTERS/Stringer)

Fighting then continued inside and outside the National Stadium after officials canceled the game due to the bus incident.

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“Three people died and seven were shot and stabbed. One of them is a boy,” local hospital spokeswoman Laura Schoenherr told the Reuters news agency. “Three of the injured adults are in critical condition.”

Firefighters carry a woman after three people died in riots before a soccer match when the fans attacked a bus carrying one of the teams, at the National Stadium in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

Firefighters carry a woman after three people died in riots before a soccer match when the fans attacked a bus carrying one of the teams, at the National Stadium in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.
(REUTERS/Stringer)

The Motagua club shared pictures on Twitter of the inside of the damaged bus after the attack.

The team also shared photos of the injured players who had to be transported to an area hospital and treated for facial wounds. They were identified as Emilio Izaguirre, Roberto Moreira and Jonathan Rougier.

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“Reprehensible and lamentable,” the Motagua club said in another tweet with photos of the damage.

Around 10,000 people were in the stadium as violence developed outside, with many later getting caught in a stampede as police used tear gas to try to get control of the crowd, the BBC reported.

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The country’s ministry of security told Reuters it had set up “five rings of security” before the game.

Police officers keep watch after three people died in riots before a soccer match in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

Police officers keep watch after three people died in riots before a soccer match in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.
(REUTERS/Jorge Cabrera)

The president of Olympia club, Rafael Villeda, told the local press that he would meet with the leadership of the National League and Motagua to decide on the future of the game, according to the news agency.