Beitar Jerusalem striker Zarko Korac.
(photo credit: ADI AVISHAI)
Seven hundred cops and Border Police officers and 200 ushers will work the Beitar Jerusalem vs Bnei Sakhnin soccer match in the Arab village of Sakhnin Sunday night, in an attempt to prevent violence between supporters of the two bitter rivals.
The match comes amid rising tension between Jews and Arabs and talk of a third intifada, and presents a special challenge for the Northern District.
In order to prevent violence, police said they will ban the entry of any fans who appear to have consumed alcohol or are on banned entry lists. All of the 4,800 tickets sold for the match will be approved and recorded by police ahead of time, the Northern District said.
Beitar Jerusalem fans will be driven to the match under police escort after having undergone security checks, in order to prevent fans from bringing in flares, fireworks and weapons of any sort. Police also said that Sakhnin’s Doha Stadium seats will be split into three sections, each bordered by a large contingent of police.
Head of the Northern District, Cmdr. Zohar Dvir, said that police will “show a heavy hand and zero tolerance toward physical or verbal violence” and in particular racist chants from either side.