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Celtic consider response to fine over IRA chants

By Martyn Ziegler

Celtic will wait until they receive the full details of UEFA's decision to fine them 15,000 euros (£12,700) for 'illicit chanting' by fans before deciding whether to lodge an appeal.

UEFA's control and disciplinary panel imposed the fine for chanting at the 3-1 win over Rennes on November 3. The match delegate was informed of pro-IRA chanting by the Strathclyde police match commander.

A Celtic statement said: "We have received notification of the fine with no detail. The club is currently considering its position."

Earlier this month Celtic escaped Scottish Premier League action over pro-IRA chanting, the league ruling the club had taken all reasonable action to prevent such "unacceptable conduct", which was reported by police following a goalless draw against Hibernian on October 29.

UEFA have been more willing to punish clubs and national associations in similar instances.

The European governing body have fined Rangers for "discriminatory" behaviour on three occasions, the latest offences also prompting a one-match travel ban on supporters.

European football's anti-discrimination chief has insisted UEFA are right to target such chanting by Old Firm fans because the issue has not been tackled domestically.

Piara Powar, executive director of the FARE network which campaigns against discrimination in 41 European countries, said last month: "There was not enough done to take the bull by the horns and it has taken an outside organisation like UEFA to shine an external light on the problem."

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