x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Congo riots follow Club World Cup loss

Congolese police fired over the heads of residents in the city of Lubumbashi after local football club TP Mazembe lost the final of the Club World Cup.

Congolese police have fired over the heads of residents in the city of Lubumbashi after local football club TP Mazembe lost the final of the Club World Cup to Italian giants Inter Milan in Abu Dhabi.

Mazembe were hoping to become the first African winners of the event but Inter, the European champions, proved too strong as they cantered to a 3-0 victory in Abu Dhabi.

The loss sparked sporadic looting in Lubumbashi as disappointed fans took out their anger on Chinese-run stores, an AFP correspondent reported.

Some fans who watched the game on television in the capital city of Katanga smashed windows and began looting Chinese-owned mobile telephone premises but police intervened and restored order and nobody was reported injured.

During the game, some fans had criticised several decisions by the Japanese referee and, mistaking the official's nationality, had chanted "Chinese go home."

China has a substantial commercial presence in Lubumbashi and Katanga, with Chinese firms involved in copper mining in the region.