AFCON: Crush at Cameroon stadium during game leaves at least eight dead


The incident occurred at the south entrance of the Olembe Stadium as fans attempted to watch the round of 16 match between Cameroon and Comoros.

A government statement said 31 people were lightly injured and seven were seriously injured.

“Facing this tragedy, the seriousness of which has provoked emotion and consternation, the Head of State [Paul Biya] sends his saddest condolences to the badly hit families, as well as his wishes of a speedy recovery to the injured, to whom he sends the profound compassion of the entire nation,” the statement added.

The deceased were taken to the Yaoundé Emergency Centre, while the injured were divided between four health facilities in Yaoundé.

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The Confederation of African Football (CAF), which organizes the Africa Cup of Nations, said it was aware of the crush.

“CAF is currently investigating the situation in order to obtain more details about these incidents. We are in constant communication with the Cameroonian authorities and the local organizing committee,” a CAF spokesperson said in a statement.

CAF Secretary-General Veron Mosengo-Omba is set to visit the victims in Yaoundé, the spokesperson added.

In a statement on Tuesday, FIFA — football’s global governing body — sent “deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims who lost their lives” in the crush.

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It added: “The thoughts and prayers of the global football community are with the victims, the ones who have been injured in this incident, and all the staff of both CAF and the Cameroonian Football Association at this difficult moment.”

The game ended in a 2-1 victory to Cameroon as the host nation progressed to the quarterfinals of AFCON to face Gabon.

Monday’s incident came a day after another tragedy in the capital.

At least 16 people were killed when a fire tore through a nightclub early Sunday, according to a government statement. Another eight people were seriously injured and are in intensive care.

At a news conference held at the scene, the director of the Yaoundé Central Hospital said several people were in critical condition.

Explosions from fireworks caused the ceiling at the Liv Nightclub to catch fire, resulting in two strong explosions that caused panic among those in the venue, according to the statement from the Cameroonian Ministry of Communication.

Biya ordered an in-depth investigation into the incident and sent his condolences to the victims’ families, the government statement added.

CNN’s Joel Kouam reported from Cameroon and Mitchell McCluskey wrote from Atlanta. CNN’s Niamh Kennedy, Nimi Princewill and Schams Elwazer contributed to this report.

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