Friday, February 17, 2012
Closing The Fort
Tangerang police have announced they will no longer give security clearance for Persikota or Persita games at the Benteng Stadium.
The teams haven't met in top flight football for many years but their fans continue having a pop at each other as well as the people who live near the stadium. The clubs have done nothing to stop the disturbances, in echos of English football in the 1970s they don't feel they are responsible, while the police recently got involved in checking the lengths of skirts worn on match day by girls.
It has taken a local religious organisation to issue a fatwa, or instruction, saying that games should be made haram, forbidden, at the stadium before the police decided to take any action. Even when there have been fatalities nothing was done.
Incidents have not been confined to the stadium vicinty. Brawls have spilled over to the near by expressway while villages and towns have also been affected.
Both fan groups, Laskar Benteng Viola (Persita) and Benteng Mania have said they won't peace but if the rock throwing youths aren't members of their organisations there is little they can do.
Tangerang is an industrial overspill from Jakarta with a population of around a million. Jakarta's international airport lies within the city limits, or the district limits, one of the two.