Nine hurt in Bosnian fan violence

MOSTAR, Bosnia - Nine people were hurt after hooligans attacked police in the Croat part of the southern Bosnian town of Mostar, venting anger over Croatia's 5-1 loss to England in a football World Cup qualifier, police said on Thursday.

The police used tear gas to disperse a group of Bosnian-Croat youngsters who were throwing bottles and crates at shop windows and the police, hurting six officers late on Wednesday, a Mostar police spokesman said.

Three attackers were also lightly injured. Nobody was hospitalised.

"We detained eight people, including three minors," spokesman Srecko Boras told Reuters.

Mostar, divided between the Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats after the 1992-95 war, is no stranger to soccer violence.

In the ethnically divided Bosnia, Bosnian Croats and Bosnian Serbs support the national teams of Croatia and Serbia. Only Bosnian Muslims support the Balkan country's national team.

Bosnia kept hold of second place in Group Five and a chance of a playoff place behind group winners Spain after they drew 1-1 with Turkey in their World Cup European qualifier at home on Wednesday.

England's 5-1 win over Croatia in Group Six guaranteed their place in the World Cup finals.