Latvijas uzņēmējam piederoša maiznīca Krievijā atbalsta armiju



Pārkāpumus jauniešu cīņu šovā vērtē Valsts policija

Youth fight show in Latvia to be looked at by police

Violation after violation – fighting sports industry professionals say this about a fight between an 18-year-old and a 15-year-old, the video of which has been made public. The event did not comply with various safety rules as well. Police will look into this incident, Latvian Television reported on February 14.

A video clip shows a fight between an 18-year-old and a minor – a 15-year-old. One of the contestants broke his leg during the fight. He was taken to hospital by the Emergency Medical Service.

Outrage at the event has been expressed publicly by boxer and blogger Kristaps Zutis:"'What's extraordinary is that they put a fifteen-year-old against an eighteen-year-old. Fifteen-year-olds shouldn't be allowed to be punched for 40 seconds. That's where the referee has to get involved. Must stop the fight. If I saw as a parent the kind of competition where fifteen-year-olds fight like this, I would hardly want to send my son into sport. And it's a stain of shame for the whole sport, all the fights."

Several violations were also seen by the Latvian Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Federation. It has circulated a letter condemning what happened at the event and strongly opposes the organisation of such events.

"Children under 18 should not participate without guards. We have a statute that says that up to 18-year-olds without protectors - no head protector, no leg protectors, no tooth protector - should not participate. [In events] over 100 people, it is mandatory to have medical staff present with an ambulance. Not some kind of nurse who can't [help]. It is fascinating to us that something like this can happen at all," said Kaspars Semjonovs, representative of the Latvian MMA Federation.

In addition, stakes were placed on underage athletes in these fights.

Organizers of the event, the Kings of Streets Professional Fighters League, in response to LTV's call for an interview, sent an official statement on their Facebook page. They expressed regret at the leg fracture sustained during the event. All underage athletes are monitored by their parents during the event, the organizers said. 

Meanwhile, in response to the video and discussions on social networks, the State Police launched an own-initiative inspection.

"By conducting internet monitoring and responding to publicly available information, the State Police has launched a check. It will assess whether existing laws and regulations, namely the sports law and the gambling and lotteries law, have been complied with. The police will also request information from the Latvian national sports council and organizers," State Police spokeswoman Gita Gžibovska said.

The Lotteries and Gambling Supervisory Inspection has also received several submissions. So far, such cases involving minors have not come to the attention of the Inspectorate.

"We separate two things. One is that minors cannot place [stakes] themselves. That's what the law prohibits. Perhaps in this case we will also approach the Ministry of Finance with a submission to improve the gambling and lotteries law, where it would be stipulated that placing bets on competitions involving minors is also prohibited," said Inspectorate chief Signe Birne.

Such a fight show was hosted for the second time by the specific organization.

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