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Turkish referee leaves hospital after assault by membership president that halted all matches

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ANKARA, Turkey — A Turkish referee was discharged Wednesday from a hospital the place he was handled for a facial fracture after being punched by the president of a top-flight soccer membership.

The assault led to the Turkish Soccer Federation suspending all league video games.

MKE Ankaragucu president Faruk Koca attacked Halil Umut Meler on the pitch after the ultimate whistle of a 1-1 attract a Tremendous Lig residence sport towards Caykur Rizespor on Monday. The referee, who fell to the bottom, was additionally kicked in a melee that occurred when followers invaded the pitch after Rizespor scored a last-minute equalizer.

Koca and two different individuals have been positioned beneath pretrial detention, going through fees of inflicting damage to a public official.

The soccer federation was scheduled to carry a gathering later Wednesday to resolve on the attainable resumption of league video games in Turkey, which has been chosen to co-host the 2032 European championship with Italy.

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Meler, who was handled for a fracture close to his eye, walked out of Ankara’s Acibadem Hospital and raised his hand to salute the assembled media earlier than coming into a automobile. The state-run Anadolu Company mentioned Meler would journey to his residence in Izmir, western Turkey, escorted by police for defense.

The hospital’s chief doctor Mehmet Yorubulut informed reporters that the referee’s morale was excessive.

“He has no issues apart from the swelling in his eye,” Yorubulut mentioned, including that the fracture would heal in time.

Koca is reported to have informed prosecutors throughout questioning that he merely slapped Meler, accusing the referee of “wrongful choices” and provocative actions.

He later introduced his resignation.

“I apologize to the Turkish referee and sports activities neighborhood, to the Turkish individuals and particularly to Mr. Meler and his household for the angle I displayed towards Halil Umut Meler,” he mentioned in an announcement learn by his lawyer late Tuesday.

Media reviews cited Meler as telling prosecutors that the membership president shouted “I’ll kill you” through the assault and in addition threatened to “end off” all the match officers on the pitch.

Violence in soccer is commonplace in Turkey regardless of efforts to clamp down on it, though direct assaults on top-level referees are uncommon.


AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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