Argentina bans fans from games, aiming to reduce violence

Photo: AP

Boca Juniors fans cheer for their team in Buenos Aires.

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- In an attempt to lessen the violence surrounding Argentine soccer, the season starts this weekend with only club members allowed to enter stadiums and watch home games.

The rules will be in force for the first two weekends. After that, the plan calls for a continued ban on visiting fans from attending the matches.

Almost every match in Argentina's top leagues is threatened with violence. Last month, two Boca Juniors fans were killed in a shootout between rival factions of hooligan gangs that support the famous Buenos Aires club. The violence took place at a preseason match scheduled against San Lorenzo.

The Argentine Football Association, with the backing of the government, came up with the plan. The AFA has been blamed for doing little to stem the violence.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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