RIO DE JANEIRO, June 09. /ITAR-TASS/. Up to 20,000 Russian citizens are expected to attend the 2014 World Cup matches, due to kick off in Brazil on June 12, a senior Russian diplomat in Rio de Janeiro said on Monday.
Russian Consul General in Rio de Janeiro Andrei Budayev said that out of the whole number of expected Russians, only 500 people are the so-called ‘vicious fans’, who “will possibly need to be monitored by consulate general’s staff and law enforcers.”
The diplomat also warned Russians planning to go to Brazil for the much-anticipated global football event of the “complicated criminal situation in the country, where despite extra safety measures undertaken by the Brazilian authorities it (the criminal situation) would hardly change at once for the better during the championship.”
Budayev said that in order to make the visit a success one should “abide by the laws and traditions of the hosting country to avoid any kind of misunderstanding and conflict situations", as well as to always use “the common sense".
Representatives from the Russian Interior Ministry, as well as from the Foreign Ministry, would be also dispatched to Brazil for the duration of the championship, which runs until July 13, to assisst in all possible conflict situations involving Russian nationals.
“Here at the Russian Consulate General office in Rio de Janeiro, we are waiting for six more diplomats from Moscow, who will be arriving at different dates beginning from June 10 to enhance our potential, concerning the protection of rights and interests of our Russian citizens,” Budayev said.
This year, Russia managed to qualify for the World Cup finals in Brazil, after missing the previous World Cups in 2006 and 2010. Russia’s first game in Group H is scheduled for June 17 against South Korea. The national team, coached by Italy’s Fabio Capello, will then play Belgium in Rio de Janeiro on June 22 and will complete the group stage with a match against Algeria on June 26.
The upcoming World Cup in Brazil is also important for the Russians from the organizational point of view as the next 2018 World Cup will be held in Russia. The country won the bid to host the 2018 World Cup a little over three years ago in a tight race against the joint bid from England, Portugal and Spain and the joint bid on behalf of Belgium and the Netherlands.