Fan ban on popular Kurdish team lifted seven years later

Fan ban on popular Kurdish team lifted seven years later
A+ A-
Fans of Diyarbakir's Amedspor will be able to support their team at the away match in Izmir's Menemen on Saturday.

A fan ban on Turkey's most popular Kurdish football team Amedspor was lifted seven years after it was imposed, Amidahaber reported on Thursday.

The ban was lifted as Amedspor qualified for the playoffs in Turkey's second league.

The club recently announced that there will be no fan ban at the match to be played against Menemen F.C. on 20 May in the Aegean town of Menemen in Izmir province.

The chair of Mezopotamya Football Fans Association Ramazan Tugay said:

"Amedspor faced insults and racist attacks in every match played at the opponent's ground (...) The lifting of the ban in Izmir is pleasing."

Amedspor is the football club of Kurdish-majority Diyarbakir, a province of 1.8 million with a metropolitan area of over 1.1 million.

Amedspor team was recently subjected to attacks and racist insults before an during a match on 5 March in the western city of Bursa.

While the leader of far right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) congratulated Bursa fans "for their national stance" after the incidents, all suspects were quickly released after a brief detention.

Ultranationalist Victory Party leader Umit Ozdag sparked controversy and faced backlash from supporters and directors of Amedspor after he pledged on 8 May that he will prevent the football team from participating in Turkey's leagues.

"Amed" is the Kurdish name for Diyarbakir.