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High security for England-Croatia semi — in Benidorm


Madrid (AFP) – Spanish authorities said Wednesday they were bringing in police backup to the party resort of Benidorm ahead of the World Cup semi-final pitting England against Croatia, after English fans caused havoc in previous games.

“We’ve asked for extra police forces to come from other regions,” Juan Carlos Fulgencio, the central government’s representative in the region of Valencia where Benidorm is located, said in comments emailed to AFP.

A fishing village decades ago, Benidorm today is a mass of skyscrapers, fast-food outlets, bars and nightclubs where thousands of tourists — many of them British — come on cheap package holidays.

Spanish media showed footage of unruly behaviour by Britons during England games.

In one video broadcast at the end of June on several Spanish television channels, one man is seen throwing himself onto a car, breaking its front window.

On Saturday, when England beat Sweden to reach the semi-finals, riot police were called into the seaside city to contain some rowdy supporters.

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