Wiesenthal Center Calls for Sanctions Against Croatian Soccer Fans in Wake of Fascist and Anti-Semitic Chants at Recent Israeli-Croatian Friendly Match

March 28, 2016

Jerusalem-The Simon Wiesenthal Center today called for sanctions to be leveled against Croatian football supporters in the wake of numerous fascist and anti-Semitic chants by local fans at the Israeli-Croatian friendly match held in Osijek, Croatia last Wednesday.



In a statement issued here by its director for Eastern European Affairs Dr. Efraim Zuroff, the Center noted that Croatian fans had expressed identification with the Ustasha fascist regime which ruled Croatia during World War II and orchestrated the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of innocent Serbs, Jews, Roma and anti-fascist Croatians.

According to Zuroff:

"Chants of Za dom spremni (Ready for the homeland) and Mi Hrvati! Ustasha, Ustasha! (We Croatians! Ustasha, Ustasha!) clearly express support for a country whose government organized the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of its minorities and political opponents. The fact that no one sought to stop these chants or take any measures against those shouting them, including Prime Minister Orešković, or any of the Croatian ministers or officials of the Croatian Football Association, constitutes a badge of shame for Croatia."

The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Palatino).

For more information, please contact the Israel Office of the Wiesenthal Center:

Tel: 972-2-563-1274 or Tel: 972-50-721-4156. Join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter feed.