Belgian league bans smoking in stadiums to fight virus

BRUSSELS (AP) — The Belgian soccer league is banning smoking at all matches to try and slow the spread of the coronavirus.

The ban will begin on Oct. 16 to make sure spectators keep their face masks on as much as possible, the league said on Tuesday. It noted that smoking was not a good excuse to take masks off.

The league also said smoking areas in stadiums were high-risk zones for COVID-19 contaminations.

Fans have been allowed back into stadiums since last month amid the pandemic, which has killed more than 10,000 known people in the country. Stijn Van Bever, the league head of communication, said up to 9,200 spectators have been authorized in the country’s biggest arenas.


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