Israeli Minister Urges Italy to Crack Down on Racism After anti-Semitic Soccer Scandal

Miri Regev called the display of Lazio supporters littering a stadium with images of Anne Frank wearing a jersey of city rival Roma 'despicable'

In this Sunday, June 21, 2015 file photo, Israeli Minister of Culture and Sport Miri Regev speaks during the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.
Associated Press

Sports and Culture Minister Miri Regev has asked her Italian counterpart to crack down on racism in soccer after Lazio supporters littered a stadium with images of Holocaust victim and diarist Anne Frank wearing a jersey of city rival Roma.

Regev’s office says a letter dispatched to Luca Lotti called the display “despicable” and accused thousands of Lazio fans of openly identifying with neo-Nazi symbols. She wrote that calling Roma players “Jews” inferred they were a “scourge to be avoided.”

The Italian soccer federation has said a passage from Frank’s diary will be read aloud at all soccer matches in Italy this week. It said it would also be combined with a minute’s silence before Serie A, B and C matches to promote Holocaust remembrance.