On the official parade in Sochi marched people with painted black faces and bananas in the hands, once again raising fears about racism at Russian football matches. This city in less than a month will be the venue of the FIFA confederations Cup with the team of Cameroon.
For photos state news Agency TASS made man in his national team of Cameroon with a drum in his hands; his face and hands are painted in a dark color. After him is another man, whose face is also painted black. On his head a wig in the style of “Afro” in the hands of the drum, and on the neck, a bunch of bananas.
The other man threw on the shoulders of the Mexican flag, wearing a sombrero and stuck a black mustache. In the second photo two young men are in headdresses of American Indians in costumes with fringe.
Cameroon will play with Germany at the Fisht stadium, built for the winter Olympics 2014. The game will take place on June 25. Mexico at the same stadium will play on June 21 with New Zealand.
The mayor of Sochi led this procession of three thousand people in “colorful costumes” by clicking on the main city street and officially opening the holiday season. Protesters with black faces were in the convoy, dedicated to the confederations Cup, which will be something of a dress rehearsal for the world Cup. This championship also will be held in Russia next year.
On Tuesday evening the Sochi city administration has issued a statement in which he noted that “friendly carnival, symbolizing different continents, demonstrates the tolerant attitude of Russians to the world’s traditions.”
“The organizers of the carnival set ourselves exceptionally friendly goals that aim to create a positive atmosphere, and do not set ourselves the task to insult someone. We look forward to the opportunity to welcome the national team of Cameroon and its fans, as well as representatives of all other countries during the FIFA confederations Cup,” — said in a statement.
But the history of football racism in Russia raises questions about how comfortable will the blacks and the colored fans and players during the two biggest football tournaments on a global scale.
In 2015, the Fare network and the Moscow information-analytical center “Sova” has published a report which noted 99 of racism and far-right views, as well as 21 attack on racism from Russian football fans during the seasons 2012-2013 and 2013-2014. In one case, the bullies beat up the fans of the Makhachkala club “Anji” from the Caucasus region, populated mostly by Muslims. It happened in August 2012, and the attack occurred outside of stadiums in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
The attacks are foreign players. The match in Saint-Petersburg in 2011 at left back, the Brazilian Roberto Carlos, someone threw a banana, and the fans in Moscow in 2010 raised a banner with a picture of a banana, offending in this way Nigerian striker Peter Odemwingie.
Brazilian striker St. Petersburg “Zenit”, the Hulk said in 2015, in Russia, he is faced with racism “almost every game”. A footballer from Ghana, Emmanuel Frimpong stated that when he played for the football club “Ufa”, the crowd was subjected to “racial abuse”.
Russia promised that racism in tournaments organized by it will not, and the Russian football Union in February, appointed former, Chelsea midfielder Alexei Smertin by the inspector on struggle against racism and discrimination in football. But even this news caused a small scandal, as in 2015 Smertin said that “in Russia there is racism”.
The head of the official “Russian Union of fans,” Alexander Spragin adheres to the extremely right-wing, and once he was photographed when he gave the Nazi salute. It, along with other fans arrested after violent clashes at a match of Euro 2016 between Russia and England, and then deported.
Present at the Sochi parade of the Nigerian journalist Lolade of Adewuyi (Lolade Adewuyi) told the Associated Press he did not believe the intention was to insult someone, and believes that they simply did not understand the possible consequences of their actions.