El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele said at least 12 people died in a crush that formed Saturday before a soccer match outside the Cuscatlán stadium in the western Central American country. The Salvadoran Civil Protection has announced that around 500 people have been rescued inside the stadium and around a hundred have been taken to hospital, at least two of whom are in critical condition.
In the Cuscatlán stadium, a quarterfinal of the Salvadoran football championship was underway between the Alianza and FAS teams. According to some witnesses, the crowd at the gates it had formed because when the game had already begun only two small entrances were open and many people had not been able to enter: after which, according to the first reconstructions, the fans had managed to break down the gates and enter the stadium. Alianza fans were mainly involved in the crowd: the match was suspended about 15 minutes from the start, when the crowd began to get agitated and the fans started carrying the injured people towards the pitch, attracting the attention of the referees and players.
El Salvador police have announced that they will investigate the matter together with the national prosecutor’s office: “We will investigate ticket sales and stadium entrances, especially in the southern area”, which is where the incidents occurred, said the national police chief Mauricio Arriaza Chicas.