Cyprus Mail

House approves anti-hooliganism bill

File photo

The House on Wednesday approved a controversial bill that aims to tackle football related violence, but made certain amendments that irked Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou.

Only main opposition AKEL voted against the bill.

Among others, the law provides for a fan card — an identification card that must be produced when buying tickets for sporting events.

The fan card will come into effect on January 1, 2015.

Parties however, amended a provision requiring clubs to foot the cost of policing a game.

Nicolaou, who was present at the vote, expressed displeasure with the amendments.

According to figures provided by the auditor general, policing football matches costs around €1.0 million per year.

The Cyprus Football Association and the football teams had agreed in 2010 that half the cost would be covered by the teams but failed to honour that agreement.

The bill is opposed by organised fans who held protest marches on Tuesday.

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