Claudio Lotito reveals a new Lazio initiative, sending 200 fans to Auschwitz every year “to educate and make sure we don’t forget certain episodes”.
The Biancocelesti fans were moved to Roma’s Curva Sud for the win over Cagliari on Sunday, as the Curva Nord was closed for racist chanting.
After the match it was discovered that anti-Semitic messages had been left, including pictures of Anne Frank wearing a Roma shirt.
“We’re here today to disassociate ourselves from any form of xenophobia and anti-Semitism,” President Lotito said on a visit to a synagogue today.
“The overwhelming majority of Lazio fans share this position. We’ll do many other initiatives to suppress these incidents through daily action, such as visits by players to schools to educate about the rules, and overcoming social, racial and financial barriers.
“We’re not talking here about what Lazio want to do, but what we have always done: Lazio have always been clear in condemning these incidents, with strong signals and even taking people to court.
“Today I can officially announce that Lazio will partake in a new annual initiative, organising an annual trip to Auschwitz for 200 Lazio fans to educate and make sure we don’t forget certain episodes, so that these lads can know what it is we’re talking about.
“You can’t play around with these facts we condemn all forms of racism. Lazio will launch this initiative.
“Lazio wants to clarify who did this through the use of cameras, also who printed the stickers. I find it strange that this happened, after a statement last week asking the fans not to do these things.
“There are no racist images in the Curva today, in the past there were banners and flags which left no room for interpretation.
“Ever since I’ve been President there have never been banners or attitudes by which you could identify fans as racist, anti-Semitic or xenophobic.
“There are bad apples in every community, unfortunately, we can’t put a steward on every fan.
“We only opened the Curva Sud to protest against racism, it wasn’t a ploy. Don’t use these things to denigrate the club and the good we’ve done until now.”