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Senegal football club suspended after stadium tragedy

AFP
17 July 2017 | Africa
Eight people were killed when part of a stadium collapsed in Senegal on Saturday.  By SEYLLOU (AFP/File)
Eight people were killed when part of a stadium collapsed in Senegal on Saturday. By SEYLLOU (AFP/File)

Dakar (AFP) - Senegal's US Ouakam team was suspended from the country's football federation on Monday after accusations its supporters threw projectiles at rival fans triggering a stampede that left eight dead.

Multiple witnesses told AFP that Ouakam fans threw stones and other objects at Stade de Mbour supporters when Mbour scored a goal to take a 2-1 lead in extra time during Senegal's League Cup final on Saturday.

"Union Sportive de Ouakam are temporarily suspended," the Senegalese Football Federation announced in a statement, given "the loss of lives and serious injuries" at the Demba Diop stadium in Dakar.

The federation's discipline committee would meet soon to decide on sanctions against Ouakam, it said.

US Ouakam hail from the capital, Dakar, while Stade de Mbour are based 80 kilometres (50 miles) further south.

State prosecutor Serigne Bassirou Gueye is due to hold a press conference this afternoon in line with a judicial enquiry ordered into the incident, which also left dozens injured.

A wall collapsed onto fans as they tried to flee the panic created by projectiles being thrown, while police have defended their behaviour among the confusion, when tear gas was fired.

Campaigning for Senegal's legislative elections also restarted Monday after a 24-hour suspension out of respect for the victims.

The government on Sunday suspended all sports and cultural events until elections at the end of the month.

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