As Russia steps up plans for hosting the 2018 World Cup, sports minister Vitaly Mutko says the country will work to reduce racism among football fans.
Mutko's comments came two days after a banana was thrown at Chris Samba, a Congolese defender who plays for Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala, after a match at Lokomotiv Moscow on Sunday. It was the third such incident against Anzhi players in the past year and raised concerns about whether the racism that is widespread among Russian football fans would trouble the World Cup.
Mutko says "of course it's bad and Russia will fight against such manifestations of racism."
Mutko says selection of the cities where the matches will be held will be announced in September.