The Indonesian football stadium, where more than 130 people died in a crowd on October 1, will be demolished and rebuilt, the country’s president said.
“As for the Kanjuruhan Stadium in Malang, we will demolish and rebuild it according to FIFA standards,” Joko Widodo told reporters after a meeting with FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
More than 40 children were among those killed in the disaster in Malang, East Java, in what Infantino called “one of the darkest days for football”.
After fans invaded the pitch at the end of a league match between Arema FC and rivals Persebaya Surabaya, police fired tear gas into the packed stands, causing a crowd stampede.
Widodo said the stadium would be replaced with a new one “with proper facilities that can ensure the safety of both players and fans.”
Speaking earlier in the day, Infantino said FIFA would help “reform and transform” Indonesian football.
“What I can guarantee to all the people of Indonesia is that Fifa is here with you, Fifa is here to stay, Fifa is here to work in very close partnership with the government, with the Asian Football Confederation and with the Indonesian federation,” he said.
The gates at the 42,000-capacity Kanjuruhan Stadium, which opened in 2004, were only big enough to hold two people at a time, and some did not open in time when the disaster struck, officials said.
According to Indonesian soccer experts, shaky infrastructure, mismanagement, hours-long waits to leave aging stadiums and the possibility of inflaming passions have contributed to the violence that has killed scores since the 1990s.