Chelsea FC intends to offer racist supporters educational trips to Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz, in Poland, as part of measures aimed at tackling anti-Semitism.
Fans involved in racist activity, including chanting anti-Semitic slogans, will be given a choice of an educational trip to the death camp instead of being banned from attending Premier League matches.
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“If you just ban people, you will never change their behavior,” Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck was quoted as saying by the Sun.
“This policy gives them the chance to realize what they have done, to make them want to behave better,” he added.
The initiative was reportedly backed by Stamford Bridge owner Roman Abramovich who is Jewish.
Auschwitz, a symbol of terror and genocide, was the biggest death camp built and operated by Nazi Germany during World War II. It was established in 1940 in the suburbs of the Polish city Oswiecim and rapidly evolved into a network of horrific concentration camps where more than one million people were exterminated in gas chambers or died from starvation or heavy work. In April, a Chelsea delegation attended the annual March of the Living at Auschwitz to pay tribute to the victims of the Holocaust.
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“The trips to Auschwitz were really important and effective and we will consider more as well as other things that will affect people,” Buck said.
“We want to convince other clubs to do their own things and make a real dent in what is still a problem,” he added.