AP NEWS

Soccer fans clash with church members over stadium plaza

September 10, 2018
1 of 2

In this photo provided by the Andina government news agency, Alianza Lima club soccer fans, left, fight with members of an evangelical church, yellow helmets at right, outside the soccer club's stadium in Lima, Peru, Monday, Sept. 10, 2018. The two groups clashed outside the stadium over who has the right to use the area surrounding the sports venue, after the religious group arrived early in the morning and started removing the team's logos from the parking area. (Norman Cordova/Andina News Agency via AP)

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Soccer fans clashed with members of an evangelical church Monday in a dispute over who owns a sprawling plaza in front of the main entry to a stadium.

Hundreds of members of The Upper Room church wearing yellow construction helmets arrived in buses early in the day and began painting walls, covering over images of famed players from Alianza Lima, one of Peru’s most historic clubs.

Soccer fans soon arrived and the two sides clashed. Police used tear gas to break up the confrontation.

Police Chief Gaston Rodriguez said two of the fans were detained and one of the church members was injured.

The club said in a news release that it has owned the plaza for 40 years. But church attorney Sandro Balbin said the church has been the registered owner of the property since 2016.

The area is now used for concerts, parking and a gathering place for fans. The Upper Room, which has thousands of members across the country, wants to hold worship services there.

AP RADIO
Update hourly