Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Game postponed after Israelis flee fist-pumping, chanting Turkish fans
ANKARA, Turkey -- An Israeli basketball team fled to the locker room Tuesday as hundreds of fist-pumping, chanting Turkish fans protested the violence in Gaza.
The European Cup game between Bnei Hasharon and Turk Telekom was postponed because the Israeli team did not return to the court. There was no word on when or where the game would be played.
The fans chanted "God is Great" and "Killer Israel." At least one fan threw his shoe at Israeli players but police used riot shields to protect them as they left the court. The Turkish players also headed to the locker room. A pro-Islamic group earlier set an Israeli flag on fire outside the arena.
Turkey has harshly criticized its ally Israel over the ground offensive in Gaza and has urged an immediate cease-fire. It has also called on the United Nations to take steps to end the violence. Israel says it acted to stop rocket attacks from Islamic Hamas militants.