Belgian topflight game halted over Fukushima slurs

Belgian topflight game halted over Fukushima slurs

Published Aug. 20, 2011 2:30 p.m. ET

A game in the Belgian topflight was temporarily stopped on Saturday after visiting fans taunted Japanese goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima over the recent Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The referee halted the match between Lierse SK and Beerschot after some Beerschot supporters began chanting: ''Kawashima-Fukushima.''

The match resumed after a delay of several minutes and ended in a 1-1 draw. Kawashima left the pitch in tears and said later he could forgive many insults, ''but not this.''

The Japan international said: ''Using the drama of Fukushima in this manner is not at all funny.''


An earthquake and tsunami in March devastated large parts of Japan's northeast coastline and left over 20,000 people dead or missing. Another 100,000 people were evacuated due to radiation leakage from the damaged Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant.