12-Dead Following Stampede at Soccer Stadium in El Salvador

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Tragedy Struck at an El Salvadorian Soccer Stadium when a sudden collapse of a gate led to a massive stampede of fans entering the stadium.

El Salvador was left in a state of shock on Sunday following a tragic stampede at a soccer stadium that claimed the lives of 12 people and left hundreds injured. The country’s president, Nayib Bukele, has promised a thorough investigation into the incident.

“Everyone will be investigated: teams, managers, stadium, box office, league, federation,” Bukele said on Twitter. He warned that “whoever the culprits are, they will not go unpunished.”

What Was the Cause?

The stampede is believed to have been triggered by the collapse of a stadium gate, causing people to be pushed together, as described by Fuentes. Survivors like Fredy Alexander Ruiz, 28, recounted their traumatic experiences of witnessing people being trampled and injured on the ground.

Preliminary reports suggest that the stampede occurred when a crowd of fans attempted to enter the 35,000-seat Cuscatlan Stadium in the capital city of San Salvador to attend a match between local teams Alianza and FAS. As emergency personnel worked to evacuate people from the stadium, which was filled with the sound of ambulance sirens, the match was suspended. The scene was surrounded by a significant presence of police officers and soldiers.

Carlos Fuentes, a spokesperson for the emergency services group Comandos de Salvamento, stated that they were providing treatment to over 500 individuals with various injuries. Civil protection authorities reported that a total of 88 people were hospitalized.

A Statement From FESFUT

The Salvadoran Football Federation (Fesfut) said in a statement it “deeply regrets” the events that occurred at the stadium and “expresses its solidarity” with the families of those “affected and killed.”

“Fesfut will immediately request a report of what happened and will communicate the relevant information as soon as possible,” it said.

Due to the incident, the federation said “all soccer is suspended at the national level” on Sunday.

The stampede occurred just 10 minutes into the game, and even the players joined in the frantic rescue efforts after the match was suspended. President Nayib Bukele expressed his commitment to investigating the incident thoroughly and ensuring that those responsible face appropriate consequences. This tragic event comes only seven months after a stampede in Malang, Indonesia, resulted in the deaths of 135 people, including more than 40 children, following a football match.

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