“Back from Poland, in a coffin:” Sol Campbell

British tabloids have warned fans leaving for Euro2012 in Poland and Ukraine, that they  might return in coffins because of the racist inclinations of Polish supporters. You may well be surprised that even the BBC has taken part in this 'discourse'.

Read this article in Polish: "Z Polski wrócisz w trumnie"

Yesterday morning BBC online showed the former England captain Sol Campbell telling BBC Panorama's Chris Rogers that he fears for the safety of football fans travelling to Euro 2012, warning that the outcome of a trip to Poland could be tragic (Sol Campbell warning on Euro 2012 racism)

"Would you recommend families to travel to Euro 2012," asked Mr. Rogers.

"No chance," replied Mr. Campbell. "Stay at home. Watch it on TV.  Don't even risk it, because you could even end up… coming back in a coffin".

Campbell also said that UEFA made a mistake by agreeing to having the European tournament held in countries where they still do not deal with racism and violence in stadiums.

The interview with the former English captain appeared yesterday on the BBC1 Panorama documentary Panorama: Euro 2012 – Stadiums of Hate.

It showed Polish and Ukrainian football fans paying tribute to Hitler, insulting black athletes and singing antisemitic songs.

An outraged reader, Zygmunt Koniecpolski, contacted The Polish Observer in the morning, upset by the one-sided presentation of the Polish people carried out on British media, particularly by the BBC, widely regarded as a model of impartiality.

"It follows that, upon entering Poland, a black man would immediately be murdered. I am deeply outraged by what I heard today. I work with black people, I have many black friends, some in mixed marriages. All praise our country and have never experienced anything bad," complained the annoyed reader.

He decided to inform the Polish Embassy in London of the matter.

Robert Szaniawski, a spokesman for the embassy, contacted the BBC in the morning in regards to the documentary to be broadcasted in the evening.

"These are stereotypes about the Polish people, the fall after the "Iron Curtain," he said.

"For several years, those regions of Europe were completely unknown to the average Western European.

"The best way to change opinions on our country, is a visit to Poland," Mr. Szaniawski concluded.


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