UEFA refuses minute of silence for Turkey’s Istanbul bomb victims at Euro 2016
Rob Harris, a journalist from the Associated Press, said that the UEFA dismissed the idea because the attacks were not “related directly” to football.
UEFA says it holds minute's silence when tragedies are "related to football directly, or to one of the participating teams or host country"— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) June 29, 2016
Although Turkey was one of the 24 nations that participated in last summer’s qualification tournament, its national team was eliminated after coming in third place in its group without enough points to progress to the second round. It was widely-expected that the UEFA would stage a show of support.
At least 44 people died and over 230 were injured on Tuesday in a triple suicide bombing by gunmen at Istanbul’s main airport. Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed responsibility for the terror attack, which was similar to those that took place in Brussels back in April.
In contrast, the UEFA allowed all European nations playing the week after last November’s terror attacks in Paris to wear black armbands and hold a minute of silence before kickoff in honor of the victims. At the time, they issued a statement reading:
"UEFA wishes to express its support and solidarity to France and to those affected by these horrible acts.”
Four quarter-finals will take place over the next four days, but none will have a moment of silence at kick off, nor will players from any of the eight nations be wearing black armbands out of respect for Tuesday’s victims.
The action begins on Thursday evening when Poland takes on Portugal and concludes on Sunday when France confronts surprise package Iceland to determine who the semi-finalists will be in this year’s competition.