AFP, published on Wednesday, July 13, 2022 at 04:46
Determine the responsibilities of the security fiasco of the Champions League final at the Stade de France and propose remedies to avoid such chaos during the 2024 Olympics: the Senate renders its judgment on Wednesday on this evening which scratched the image of France in the whole world.
It was to be a showcase just over a year from the Rugby World Cup and before the Summer Olympics two years from now, but the May 28 game between Real Madrid and Liverpool turned into a nightmare for the law enforcement and government.
Spectators without tickets climbing the gates of the stadium, others with tickets but unable to enter, families sprayed with tear gas by the police or thefts and attacks committed by opportunistic criminals: the organization of the meeting was a “fiasco” , have already denounced the senators, who will present their information report on the management of these incidents at noon.
“All lessons must be learned for the organization of the next international sporting events”, warned the elected officials, led by the presidents of the Law Commission, François-Noël Buffet (LR), and of the Culture Commission, Laurent Lafon (centrist).
“The various hearings have highlighted contradictions between the different people heard,” said Senator LR Michel Savin, president of the study group devoted to major sporting events, who had requested a commission of inquiry.
“We also saw malfunctions in communication, in information,” he added, assuring that the work of the Senate had “made it possible to measure all the points which have malfunctioned and which must be corrected in order to be in ability to reflect a much better image”.
Among the people heard by the senators since June 1: officials of sports bodies, representatives of Liverpool supporters and the French authorities, including the controversial Paris police chief Didier Lallement, announced on the departure, and the Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin.
– “Apologies” from Darmanin –
The latter was at the heart of criticism by placing most of the blame for the incidents on “30,000 to 40,000 England supporters” who, he claimed against most observers on the spot, had turned up at the stadium “ without a ticket or with counterfeit tickets”.
Gérald Darmanin’s explanations were also undermined by UEFA, which only counted 2,600 counterfeit tickets at the turnstiles.
And if the European football body told senators that it did not know exactly how many fans without tickets had gone to the vicinity of the Stade de France, it “does not believe that this was the figure mentioned in France “.
“If Darmanin had not lied, there would have been no affair,” said François-Noël Buffet (LR) in an interview with the daily Le Progrès at the beginning of the month.
Pressed by critics, the Minister of the Interior ended up recognizing at the end of June “a part of responsibility” in the failures of the evening and reiterated his “apologies” to the supporters “who suffered this mismanagement”.
Beyond the police management of the incidents, the controversy has also been fueled by the non-conservation of part of the CCTV images of the Stade de France, described as “serious fault” by Senator Buffet.
In parallel with the work of the Senate, the interministerial delegate for the Olympic Games and major events, Michel Cadot, pinpointed as of June 10, in a first report submitted to Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne, the “failures” of the organization and the police response to the incidents which, according to him, caused “serious damage to the image of France”.
Without waiting for the verdict of the senators, Ms. Borne has already instructed the Ministers of the Interior and Sports to “immediately implement” the recommendations of the Cadot report.