Soccer-Hungary foreign minister slams UEFA after sanctions over fan discrimination

·1-min read
General Affairs meeting in Luxembourg

(Reuters) - Hungary's foreign minister called European soccer's governing body UEFA a "pitiful" organisation on Saturday for its decision to order Hungary to play their next two games behind closed doors due to their fans' discriminatory behaviour.

"The committee that makes a decision like that is a pitiful and cowardly body. They should be ashamed of themselves," Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on his Facebook page.

"Just like in communism: no need for evidence, it's enough to have unanimous reports."

UEFA on Friday ordered Hungary to play its next two internationals with no fans due to discriminatory behaviour in the crowd during European Championship matches in Budapest.

In Hungary's opener at Budapest's Puskas Arena, images on social media showed banners in the crowd with "Anti-LMBTQ" on them - the Hungarian abbreviation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer.

Ahead of another match, fans marched to the arena with a banner calling on players to stop taking a knee to protest at discrimination.

UEFA told the Hungarian Football Federation it must play its next three UEFA competition matches behind closed doors, the third of which will be suspended for a probationary period of two years.

The national federation was also fined 100,000 euros ($119,000) for the behaviour of its supporters.

UEFA also ordered the HFF to display a banner with the wording "Equal Game" during its upcoming matches without spectators in the stadium.

(Reporting by Krisztina Than; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

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