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Russia Handed Suspended Euro 2016 Disqualification as Valls Vows Expulsions | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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England and Russia fans brawl in Marseille on Saturday Reuters/Jean-Paul Pelissier

Russia will be disqualified from the European Championship if there is more violence by their fans inside stadiums in France, UEFA said as it fined the Russian soccer federation after its supporters charged their English counterparts inside the Stade Velodrome over the weekend moments after the final whistle in their teams’ 1-1 draw.

UEFA sent the message Tuesday in a disciplinary panel ruling to punish the disorder at the team’s opening match against England.

Russia will be expelled if its fans attack rival fans or stadium security staff at its two remaining Group B matches, or later at Euro 2016 if the team advances.

Russia’s “disqualification is suspended until the end of the tournament,” UEFA said. “Such suspension will be lifted if incidents of a similar nature (crowd disturbances) happen inside the stadium at any of the remaining matches of the Russian team during the tournament.”

UEFA also fined the Russian soccer federation 150,000 euros ($169,000). The charges were for crowd disturbances, fans aiming racial insults at black England players and setting off fireworks during the game.

Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Tuesday some football fans will be deported from France over the violence.

Scenes of rival fans wielding metal bars and hurling beer bottles in street clashes in Marseille, as well as incidents in Nice, Lille and Paris, have turned attention away from events on the pitch.

“People will be deported after they have been sentenced as there are people who cannot remain because they are not wanted on our national territory due to their behavior,” Valls told reporters. He did not specify the nationality of those that could face expulsion.

Fifteen fans were arrested during the Saturday violence. Five England fans have so far been sentenced to jail terms of between one and three months, while a Frenchman received a two-year term.

No Russians were arrested, although Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin said on Monday about 150 Russians were in fact well-organized hooligans.