British soldiers accused of singing sectarian songs at Rangers match

Ministry of Defence says personnel will be disciplined if claims over chants at Ibrox are proven

Lee Wallace scores against Stenhousemuir on Saturday. Soldiers are alleged to have joined fans’ sectarian songs and chants at the match in Glasgow.

Lee Wallace scores against Stenhousemuir on Saturday. Soldiers are alleged to have joined fans’ sectarian songs and chants at the match in Glasgow.

 

British soldiers who attended a Rangers football match on Saturday will be disciplined if it is shown they joined in with sectarian singing and chanting, the British Ministry of Defence has said.

Videos taken at the game against Stenhousemuir clearly records Rangers supporters singing songs praising loyalist paramilitaries and uttering chants about IRA hunger-striker Bobby Sands.

The videos appear to show that some of the 400 soldiers, sailors and Royal Marines, invited to the match by Rangers in a delayed tribute to mark Armed Forces Day, joined in with the singing.

Police are investigating a number of complaints made after Saturday’s game, said the Ministry of Defence in London. “Any personnel found to have fallen short of the armed forces’ values and standards will be dealt with by the chain of command and, if necessary, by the police,” it added.


Match ban
Last week, a man was fined £350 (€418) and banned from matches for five years after he was convicted for singing an offensive sectarian song during a Hearts v Celtic fixture.

Last month, another man was fined £550 and banned for two years from games after he was observed by uniformed police singing a foul-mouthed sectarian song during a Clyde FC v Rangers game.