(AFP) – Aug 20, 2011
BRUSSELS — The Belgian top-flight encounter between Germinal Beerschot and Lierse on Friday was halted by the referee after Lierse goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima was taunted with chants about the Fukushima disaster.
Lierse had gone a goal up when visiting Beerschot fans threw a projectile in the direction of Japanese international 'keeper Kawashima before insulting him with chants of "Kawashima-Fukushima! Kawashima-Fukushima!" the Belga agency reported.
Following protests by Kawashima, the referee decided to bring play to a halt for several minutes until order was restored.
The match ended in a 1-1 draw, but Kawashima, 28, left the pitch at full-time in tears, and spoke of his anger at the chants.
"I am prepared to forget about a lot of things, but not that. It is not remotely funny," he said.
Kawashima has visited parts of the region on the east coast of Japan's main island Honshu, which was devastated by an earthquake and tsunami on March 11.
The natural disaster also caused major damage at a nuclear power plant in Fukushima.
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