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UEFA's determination to rid football of racism and intolerance is being given a high-profile platform on Matchday 3 of the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League, as part of the tenth Action Week organised by UEFA's partner, the Football Against Racism in Europe (FARE) network.
UEFA operates a zero tolerance policy towards racism and intolerance, and is committed to driving these out of the game. The UEFA President, Michel Platini, spoke of his support for the forthcoming activities: "UEFA is unshakable in its commitment to fight against any type of discriminatory behaviour at European football matches, both on and off the pitch. That is why I am pleased to support all the activities that will take place next week, together with our partner FARE, to show the watching public and fans at home that we are united in our opposition to racism."
All 16 matches on UEFA Champions League Matchday 3 and, for the first time, the 24 fixtures in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday, are supporting FARE Action Week, which involves activities throughout Europe. PA announcements are being made in support of the initiative, giant screens, where available, feature the Unite Against Racism logo and a 30-second 'No to Racism' clip will be shown before and during half-time. FARE Action Week posters are being provided for distribution at all clubs and one page of the match programme features a RESPECT advert.
The campaign is also highlighted on the field. The 22 children escorted on to the pitch by the players and the three referee escorts are wearing Unite Against Racism T-shirts, while the matchball carrier at each game wears a RESPECT T-shirt. Team captains are invited to wear the blue and yellow Unite Against Racism-branded armbands.
UEFA has been a core supporter of the FARE network since a formal agreement was signed in 2001. The tenth FARE Action Week runs until 27 October and features some 1,000 initiatives by campaigners, fans, clubs, national associations and ethnic minority and youth groups across Europe. Launched in the 2001/2002 season with initiatives in nine countries, the tenth anniversary edition of the annual FARE Action Week will involve 40 countries.
Click here for more details about FARE and the Action Week.
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