BERLIN Feb 28 Germany's football
federation (DFB) will not tolerate anti-Semitic or racist
attacks after a small group of people verbally abused Israeli
player Itay Shechter during a Kaiserslautern training session,
the DFB said on Tuesday.
The incident took place on Sunday, a day after
relegation-threatened Kaiserslautern's 4-0 defeat at Mainz 05
left them in 17th place, level on points with bottom-placed
A small group of people attended training, shouted
anti-Semitic insults at Schechter and did the Nazi salute. A few
hundred fans had met with players and officials to discuss the
club's sporting situation.
"Together with the president we want to underline that the
DFB will not tolerate such actions and we must act decisively,"
Wolfgang Niersbach, who will take over from DFB boss Theo
Zwanziger next month, told reporters.
"Racism and anti-Semitism have no place in football. We must
defend ourselves against this and we wish that the authorities
chase up this incident."
Police have launched an investigation to identify those
involved while the club, which has called on fans to help
identify the people involved, condemned the incident saying
those responsible were not football fans.
"The players understood the feelings, views and fears of the
fans," Kaiserslautern chairman Stefan Kuntz said on Tuesday on
the meeting with the Kaiserslautern fans.
"As a conclusion, it is this meeting with 300 club fans that
should be in focus and not the inexcusable behaviour of a
handfull of radicals."
The display of Nazi symbols is banned in Germany and there
have been growing concerns since the revelations last November
that an extremist right-wing cell calling itself the Nationalist
Socialist Underground lay behind the killings of 10 people,
eight Turks, a Greek and a German policewoman.
Germany's Nazi past makes right-wing militancy a
particularly sensitive subject in the country. Experts have long
warned of extremism among disenchanted young people in eastern
regions of the country where unemployment is high and job
"The club's fan representatives want to distance themselves
from any racist, discriminatory or anti-Semitic comments of any
kind," Kaiserslautern fan clubs said in a joint statement on
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann, editing by Ed Osmond)