At least 174 people died and hundreds got injured in a crowd crush after police fired tear gas to dispel riots following an Indonesian league football match, in one of the worst football tragedies.
“Inna lillahi wa Inna ilayhi rajioon. Just devastating. May Allah have mercy on them all and grant their families ease. #Indonesia,” Dr. Omar Suleiman wrote on Twitter.
— Dr. Omar Suleiman (@omarsuleiman504) October 2, 2022
📚 Read Also: Think of Your Hardships as Blessings in Disguise
Riots broke out after the game ended Saturday evening with host Arema FC of East Java’s Malang city losing to Persebaya of Surabaya 3-2.
Disappointed after their team’s loss, thousands of supporters of Arema started throwing bottles and other objects at players and soccer officials.
Fans flooded the Kanjuruhan stadium pitch in protest and riot police responded by firing tear gas, including toward the stadium’s stands, causing panic among the crowd.
“It had gotten anarchic. They started attacking officers, they damaged cars,” said Nico Afinta, police chief in East Java, adding that two police officers were among the dead, BBC reported.
Fleeing fans “went out to one point at the exit. Then there was a build-up, in the process of accumulation there was shortness of breath, lack of oxygen,” the officer added.
Indonesia’s president Joko Widodo expressed his deep condolences for the dead in televised remarks Sunday, ESPN reported.
“I deeply regret this tragedy and I hope this is the last soccer tragedy in this country, don’t let another human tragedy like this happen in the future,” Widodo said.
“We must continue to maintain sportsmanship, humanity and a sense of brotherhood of the Indonesian nation.”
Messages of condolences poured in from different clubs worldwide.
We are deeply saddened to hear of the events at Kanjuruhan Stadium, Malang, Indonesia.
The thoughts of everyone at Liverpool Football Club are with all those affected at this time.
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) October 2, 2022
We are deeply saddened by Saturday’s tragic events at the Kanjuruhan Stadium in Indonesia.
The thoughts of everyone at Leicester City Football Club are with all those affected at this sad time.
— Leicester City (@LCFC) October 2, 2022
All of us at Chelsea Football Club are deeply saddened by the events at the Kanjuruhan Stadium in Indonesia.
Our thoughts are with everyone affected by this tragedy.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) October 2, 2022
Paris Saint-Germain would like to offer its deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of those who lost their lives in the stadium tragedy in Malang, Indonesia.
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_English) October 2, 2022
We are deeply saddened by the tragedy in Malang, Indonesia. There should never be violence at a football match.
The thoughts of everyone at Ajax are with all those affected.
— AFC Ajax (@AFCAjax) October 2, 2022
Our thoughts are with everyone affected by the tragedy in Malang, Indonesia. No one should go to a football match and not come home.
— Sevilla FC (@SevillaFC_ENG) October 2, 2022
Indonesia is the world’s most populous Muslim state with Muslims making up around 85 percent of its 237-million population.