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Six arrested after Malaysian football fans riot in Sarawak

Six people were arrested after football fans rioted and torched a police car in Sarawak, Malaysia before being dispersed by tear gas and baton charges, an official said on Monday (Sep 1).

KUALA LUMPUR: Six people were arrested after football fans rioted and torched a police car at the State Stadium in Sarawak, Malaysia before being dispersed by tear gas and baton charges, an official said on Monday (Sep 1).

Local media said about 2,000 people were involved in disturbances after Sarawak's team were knocked out of the Malaysia Cup when they drew 1-1 with rival state Perak. Five policemen suffered minor injuries after stones and broken bottles were hurled at them, while some fans were also hurt and needed medical attention.


A police car being burnt by football fans during a riot in Sarawak, Malaysia. (Photo: @MohdAnuar on Twitter)

Sarawak FA president Sudarsono Osman told AFP that the incident, which lasted for about two hours late on Saturday, took place despite the presence of 400 police. He said supporters in the eastern state were taking revenge for being targeted by Perak fans during last week's 2-0 away game.

"Only about 100 fans were directly involved in the incident. They were shouting and venting their anger outside the stadium. But there were a lot of local bystanders watching," he said. "But their action to set fire a police car is way overboard, I feel disappointed with the supporters' behaviour," added Sudarsono.


A riot at State Stadium in Sarawak, Malaysia. (Photo: @fralonelrainger on Twitter)

Sudarsono also said Sarawak were expecting punishment from the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM), the national governing body. "Definitely, they will take action," he said. FAM and police officials could not immediately be reached for comment.