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Russian fans deported from France take flight to Moscow — diplomat

June 18, 16:37 UTC+3
According to the most recent media reports, a total of 20 Russian football fans were eventually ordered a deportation from France, while 20 more were released from custody
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© EPA/THIBAULT VANDERMERSCH

PARIS, June 18. /TASS/. Russian fans, detained after disorders in Marseilles and deported from France, have taken a flight to Moscow, Russia's Consul General in Marseilles Sergei Molchanov told TASS on the telephone on Saturday.

"We have got confirmation the plane has departed," he said. "Now the fans may be welcomed in Moscow."

According to the most recent media reports, a total of 20 Russian football fans were eventually ordered a deportation from France, while 20 more were released from custody.

On Saturday morning, the police escorted the fans from Marseille to the airport, from where now they are on an Aeroflot direct flight to Moscow.

According to earlier French media reports, a court in Marseille ruled on Thursday to sentence three earlier detained Russian football fans, namely Alexei Yerunov, Sergei Gorbachev and Nikolai Morozov, to prison terms between 12 and 24 months after finding them guilty of taking part in mass disturbances last week at the 2016 Euro Cup match between England and Russia.

All sentenced Russians are of the age between 28 and 33 years. French La Marseillaise daily reported that Yerunov was handed a two-year prison term, while Gorbachev and Morozov were sentenced to 18 months and 12 months in prison respectively.

Numerous clashes were reported between football fans at the major European football tournament, currently underway in France. Most notorious altercations erupted between Russian and English fans ahead of the June 11th match. Brawls began on Thursday in Marseille peaking at June 11th match.

Law enforcement resorted to tear gas, smoke pellets and water cannons to disperse the brawlers. Over 30 people were reported to be hurt in clashes, with four people hospitalized after sustaining severe injuries.

On Tuesday, French law enforcers stopped a bus with over 43 Russian football fans en-route from Marseille to Lille, where their national team played its second group stage match against Slovakia on Wednesday. The French authorities decided to deport 20 fans claiming among them are "tough and well-trained hooligans," though the detectives failed to identify anybody in 200-hour video records of the disorders. Another 20 fans were released.

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