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Brussels sees riots after Morocco beats Belgium at World Cup

Brussels Mayor Philippe Close urged soccer fans to stay away from the city center and said authorities were doing their utmost to keep order in the streets.
/ Source: Associated Press

BRUSSELS — Police had to seal off parts of the center of Brussels, deploy water cannons and fire tear gas to disperse crowds following violence during and after Morocco’s 2-0 upset win over Belgium at the World Cup.

Dozens of rioters set steps on fire and pelted cars with bricks. Police moved in after one person suffered facial injuries, said Brussels police spokeswoman Ilse Van de Keere.

Brussels mayor Philippe Close urged soccer fans to stay away from the city center and said authorities were doing their utmost to keep order in the streets. Even subway and tram traffic had to be interrupted on police orders.

Riots broke out in Brussels after Belgium's shock defeat to Morocco.
Riots broke out in Brussels after Belgium's shock defeat to Morocco.Kenzo Tribouillard / AFP - Getty Images

Morocco’s victory was a major upset at the World Cup and was enthusiastically celebrated by fans with Moroccan immigrant roots in many Belgian cities.

It was not immediately clear how many people were detained during the disturbances.