FIFA fan fest is an outdoor party set up much like a concert, with big monitors and a gate. It’s open to the public, and it’s been a popular option for tourists lacking tickets to specific games.
Yesterday, shortly before the beginning of the Columbia vs Uruguay game, FIFA fan fest security and police formed a blockade at the gate to the festival. At the beginning of the incident, police reportedly launched pepper spray at fans and their children, causing them to flee the scene. The military police and security team shoved the fans into the gate, pushing them and cursing at them, making already angry fans angrier, while some of the cops seemed to be questioning “FIFA’s orders” to block the entrance to the event.
Photos via Rodolfo Menezes
This is the second incident of this type. The first happened in Sao Paulo:
The FIFA fan fest was attacked because of overcrowding, and the fans dispersed.
The fan fest may be popular, but it is also a clear danger to locals and tourists. There was also a stabbing incident on June 28th at the Rio de Janeiro fan fest, where a woman who was being robbed screamed out for help and was stabbed in the leg by a box cutter.