Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Tartan Army not racist, but some Scots are

Mixed news for Scotland's reputation as a tolerant nation this afternoon.

First, the good news, the Tartan Army has been cleared of any suggestion of racist behaviour following the banana-throwing incident during Sunday's friendly match against Brazil.

The good old Daily Record reports that a German teenager was responsible for throwing the offending fruit when Brazil was awarded a penalty (dive!) during the game at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday, Arsenal has said.

Brazil forward Neymar, who scored both goals in his side's 2-0 win, complained after the match that he had been the victim of racist abuse, a claim strenuously denied by the Scottish Football Association and the Tartan Army fans' organisation.

The banana was retrieved from the pitch by team-mate Lucas Leiva during the game.

An Arsenal statement today read: "After consultation with the Metropolitan Police, Arsenal Football Club can confirm that a German teenage tourist has admitted throwing a banana onto the pitch during the Brazil v Scotland international friendly at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday."

And the bad news...Racist incidents in Scotland have increased by 10% in a six-year period, new figures show.

Statistics released by the Scottish Government showed there were 4,952 racist incidents recorded by the country's eight police forces in 2009/10, compared to 4,519for the 2004/05 period.

Race hate victims were most likely to be of Pakistani origin, with 48% of all those targeted in 2009/10 classed as Asian. The vast majority of race hate perpetrators - 96% - were classed as white British.

The majority of victims, 75%, were men. Men and women aged 26 to 35 were most likely to be targeted. Most incidents, 32%, took place on the street but they were also likely to take place in a private house, 19%, or in shops, 18%.

Of the perpetrators, most were men aged 16-20 followed by men under the age of 16. Girls aged under 16 were most likely to commit racist acts, followed by those aged 16to 20. About 47% of all perpetrators in 2009-10 were aged 20 or under and around 23% were under the age of 16.

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