Indonesia Football Riot: 129 People Die in Stampede After Rival Fans Clash With Police

An Indonesian league soccer match between two of the country's biggest teams turned into a catastrophe, with more than 120 people dying in a stampede that followed a riot.

Indonesia football riot
Indonesia football riot

The deadly riot happened after hooligans supporting Arema FC and Persebaya Surabaya clashed against each other. The clashes erupted after Arema FC was defeated 3-2 in the match held in the city of Malang in East Java.

In the latest update, the Indonesian police said the death toll has climbed to 129.

"First of all, a riot happened ... From Saturday's incident (so far), 127 people have died – including two members of the police," East Java police chief Nico Afinta said. He added that about 200 people have been injured, CNN reported.

The stampede happened when the police fired tear gas to dispel the rioters. "Thirty-four people died inside the stadium and the rest died in hospital .. They 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 police chief added.

Footage showed rival supporters invading the pitch after the final whistle. Videos that went around social media later showed the hooligans clashing with the police, who were donning riot gear. Smoke from tear gas shells filled the stadium, and footage showed dead bodies lying around and security personnel moving dead people in body bags.

Photos from the scene also showed extensive damage to the stadium and police assets. Several police vehicles were seen burned and upturned in the vicinity of the stadium.

Indonesia football riot
Indonesia football riot

The Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI) has launched an investigation into the incident. "We announced the decision after we received a direction from the Chairman of PSSI. We are doing this to respect everything and while waiting for the investigation process from PSSI," President Director of league owner PT LIB, Akhmad Hadian Lukita said, according to the Channel News Asia.