Juventus fan dies in hospital following Turin stampede

San Carlo Square is seen as Juventus' fan run away following panic created by the explosion of firecrackers as they was watching the match on a giant screen. Juventus v Real Madrid - UEFA Champions League Final - San Carlo Square, Turin, Italy - June 3, 2017. REUTERS/Giorgio Perottino
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TURIN, Italy (Reuters) – A Juventus supporter has died in hospital nearly two weeks after being injured when panic broke out during the screening of the Champions League final in one of Turin’s main squares.

The city government and the club confirmed in separate statements that the fan, 38-year-old Erika Pioletti, died on Thursday night.

“Juventus Football Club would like to express its sincere condolences for the death of Erika,” said Juventus.

“The events that took place in Turin and the city’s victims of the tragedy on 3 June remain in the hearts and minds of all involved with the club.”

An estimated 30,000 people had been in San Carlo square watching the game between Real Madrid and Juventus, which was being played in Cardiff, on a giant screen.

More than 1,500 were injured when supporters suddenly panicked and surged out of the square. Most suffered light injuries but one 7-year-old boy was left in a coma for more than a week. He is now recovering.

During the second half of the match, which Real Madrid went on to win 4-1, video cameras showed a sudden rush in the middle of the packed crowd, and then a violent surge that flung people against barriers.

Police are still investigating what set off the stampede. Some witnesses reported hearing firecrackers, others suggested someone released pepper spray into the air, making it hard for people to breathe.

Critics have accused the local council, run by the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, of poor organisation.

“What happened will weigh on those who are both directly and indirectly responsible,” the head of the ruling Democratic Party, Matteo Renzi, said on Friday.

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The mayor of the northern Italian city, Chiara Appendino, has apologised and called for a day of mourning for Pioletti.

(Writing by Brian Homewood; Editing by Crispian Balmer and Hugh Lawson)


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