At last night's UEFA Europa Conference League match between 1. FC Union Berlin and Maccabi Haifa, there was an anti-semitic attack on a group of German supporters of Maccabi Haifa in Block 14 of Berlin's Olympic Stadium.
Members of the German-Israeli Society Youth Forum came forward with reports of anti-semitic insults and 1. FC Union made contact with them today. They reported anti-semitic insults, fighting and an attempt to set fire to an Israeli flag by a small group of Union fans. Other Union fans in the block have shown solidarity with the victims, who eventually moved to the away section in the bottom tier after consultation with the stewards and police.
"This behaviour is shameful and we won't tolerate it. We apologise to those affected. Anti-Semitism is unfortunately still present in our society, which is why it also shows itself in the stadium. However, we will never tolerate discrimination in our ranks. It is important to remain vigilant and to work tirelessly against it. We support the investigations of the police with all sources of information available to us," said 1. FC Union Berlin's president Dirk Zingler.
"Football matches are our opportunity to break down prejudices through meeting and contact with each other. Yesterday's game is a good example of this: more than 23,000 people were in the stadium and came together in a warm atmosphere. Many of us had good meetings and discussions with our guests from Haifa and representatives of Jewish organisations in Berlin yesterday and in the run-up to the game. We will continue on this path, because the more people we reach, the more effectively we can fight anti-Semitism and discrimination in society."
The German-Israeli Society Youth Forum added: "Thank you for the wave of solidarity online and to the Union fans who showed solidarity with us in the stadium. The majority of Union supporters gave Maccabi a friendly welcome and celebrated the game of football with them. However, we also expect that consistent action will be taken against anti-semitism in the stadium so that this can continue. We are behind football without discrimination!"