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I know that the F-side is supporters of Ajax, but what more are they? And why is the Isreali flag so prominant with them? I am aware of the Jewish populations in Amsterdam, is this the way to show duel support?

-- Anonymous, January 27, 2000


Fanatical Ajax fans are slowly starting to get used to a supporters' life without the independent, hilarious, cynical F-Side fanzine De Ajax Ster ('The Ajax Star'), usually abbreviated as DAS. The editors called it quits about a year ago, because they wanted to focus on the writing, compiling and editing of a book about the F- Side's 25th anniversary (2001).

In the mean time, a new fanzine was started, Dapp're Strijders, which literally means 'Brave Warriors'. The Ajax team is referred to as "dapp're strijders" in the official club anthem, which is where the name comes from. They do good work.

Now, there finally is news of the good old DAS guys. They have announced on their website that they have finished the F-Side anniversary book. It will be called F-Side is niet makkelijk! ('F-Side is not easy!'). The title is a somewhat strange phrase, which was painted as graffiti on the brick walls of good old De Meer. The F-Side is "not easy" indeed: they're not easy to deal with, but it's also hard to determine what the F-Side is and who belong to it, and whether they're good or bad.

The title captures all that, while reviving that fascinating, somewhat strange graffiti slogan from De Meer. I think the title is very well chosen. The book will go on sale in November, first in the ArenA area, before and after games, and later in Dutch bookstores. The price will be approximately 35 euros and the book will contain 256 pages, all in full colour. There will be a lot of pictures in it, and it will be a true collector's item. So if you happen to be in Amsterdam when it goes on sale... don't hesitate!

-- Anonymous, August 16, 2002

I agree 100% with Michel's first point about club supporters and oranje supporters.

I too hate the way non-football fans tell us to be more like the Oranje fans. Rivalry between clubs and rivalry between supporters is an essential part of football. It's a pity that sometimes translates into hooliganism.

-- Anonymous, May 26, 2002


You're right, I don't know you, and to be honest I've no interest in getting to know you. Whatever part you play in the hooligan culture (large or small) I have no respect for.

I've followed football for 25 years and been to many matches. I've seen plenty of football violence and it disgusts me. I've talked to many hooligans and their logic is that there's some kind of "code of honour"...."we only fight like minded fans"..."if you don't want to get involved you don't have to...that's your choice".


I've seen adults kicking the cr@p out of kids. I've seen fans terrorizing old ladies in shopping centres. I've seen gangs surrounding girls and intimidating them. I've seen gangs of hooligans beating up fans who are desperately trying to get out their scarves to show they support the same team. I've seen fans throwing bricks through the windows of people's houses that happen to be near an opponent's stadium.

Football violence in not an innocent pastime between consenting adults...it's a social cancer that hurts innocent bystanders.

Yes, this forum is about F side (good and bad) but that doesn't make it a shrine for the unacceptable sides of fanaticism.

Like I said...take up boxing.

-- Anonymous, April 25, 2002

PS. this discussion is about F.side right? The fighting is a part of that. Always has been, always will be.

-- Anonymous, April 25, 2002

Against the law or not, it's still one's own choice. Receiving punishment for it because it's against the law is a mere consequence of that choice. But how interesting is that really?

Football doesn't need me. As if you know me the slightest bit!

-- Anonymous, April 25, 2002


You write "I have no problem with violence (up to a certain degree) and have engaged in supporter-related violence more than once. That's my choice."

Err...actually it's not. It's against the law. Violence in soccer is unacceptable. I saw the frightened faces of residents in Marseilles in '98 after the English fans had been there a few days before...it was ugly and it made me ashamed to be football fan. Also, it spoiled what should have been a party for all the fans that came after because the beaches were shut down and the bars we told not to sell alcohol after 11:00pm.

I suggest you take up boxing to work off the frustrations you evidently have.

Football doesn't need you and frankly doesn't want you.

-- Anonymous, April 22, 2002

"due to Ajax' widespread following throughout Holland (as opposed to more provincially supported clubs like Feyenoord)?"

Well Jim, first of all, also feyenoord has a widespread following throughout Holland.

The carnavaleske (?) Dutch supporters are a joke. They are usually not club-supporters, so they hardly ever visit a stadium. Everybody is always telling us that 'that is the way it should be' (reffering to the fact that there is no violence). But there is also hardly any support. There are no footballsongs whatsoever, and these people were dancing with the Brasillians after the defeat of 94. ANYONE WHO THINKS THIS IS HOW IT SHOULD BE HASN'T GOT A CLUE. But that's just my opinion ofcourse! I have no problem with violence (up to a certain degree) and have engaged in supporter-related violence more than once. That's my choice. And ofcourse it can be praised that the national team's fans never cause any trouble. But if you get kicked out of a worldcup or anything you DON'T dance with the opponents supporters. That's a slap in the face of the true supporterculture (the thing that gives football that extra something that makes it bigger then ANY other sport).

-- Anonymous, April 22, 2002


The paragraph you are reffering to reads:

"Holland The Dutch are the most colourful supporters of all, their home games awash with orange. They tend to be genial fans, except when they're playing the much-hated Germany. Their meeting at Euro 88 sparked crowd trouble before and after the game. Fans of the national team are blighted by a small hooligan element, many of them Ajax supporters."

OK let's start with the basics...Euro 98???

I've seen Holland play in USA 94, Euro 96, and France 98. Never ANY trouble, on the contrary nothing but a fantastic party atmosphere where ever they played. Goodwill towards both opposing fans and locals on all occasions.

The article is pure bollocks ('scuse the French). I know of one isolated event of minimal trouble when the Germans came to De Kuip.

Oranje fans have an excellent reputation, although the ignorant translate the domestic league issues (of which there are plenty) into a national team problem. The Ajax reference is, to your point Jim, probably no more than lazy journalism. Somebody closer to Holland tell me if I'm smoking my own exhaust...please!

As for the "carnival atmosphere" when England play at home....exsqueeze me???? I was there when we got crucified 5-1 by "Ingerland" in '96, and I have to tell you I was very relieved that we lost because I wasn't sure how I'd get out of the stadium alive! No offence to English fans reading this but I gotta tell you I vowed never to go to another England game after that.

Anyway...enough ranting...fingers crossed for Sunday!

-- Anonymous, April 19, 2002

I was surprised to read the following in an article (about U.S. fans by the way) in the Irish Independent:
Fans of the national team are blighted by a small hooligan element, many of them Ajax supporters.
Are MOST of the trouble-makers at Holland games really Ajax fans, as this sentence implies? Or is it merely true in the letter-of-the-law interpretation, in that (presumably) there are more Holland fans that are also Ajax fans, due to Ajax' widespread following throughout Holland (as opposed to more provincially supported clubs like Feyenoord)? I'm just trying to work out the truth...

-- Anonymous, April 19, 2002

Oooopppsss.....typo....I meant to say

"Ajax: the brash, arrogant, flair team that preffers a pretty miss to an ugly GOAL."

-- Anonymous, April 19, 2002

In answer to James Connolly's question below:


Dutch football does not have the kinds of political/racial (e.g. Lazio = Facist, Roma = Communist) or geographical (e.g. Catalonia and the Basque region) rivalries that exist in other countries like Scotland, Italy, and Spain. Rivalry exists at a basic/footballing level.....there are only three large teams; Ajax, P$V, and Fword.

Just to generalise on the stereotypes;

P$V: Artificial team created by massive funding from the Philips electronics company. "Spoilt rich kids."

Fword: A "working class" team from the docks that always relies on hard work, not flair. "They always have to make it hard for themselves."

Ajax: the brash, arrogant, flair team that preffers a pretty miss to an ugly miss. "Bunch of snobby posers"

The only racist undertone that I know of is the (much misundestood) link between Ajax and the Jewish community that the teams former stadium used to be in. Ajax fans have taken the "Star of David" flags as a symbol even though most aren't Jewish...almost like a private joke. Fword fans have pushed the bounds of decency in response though and have been know to make a hissing sounds in games against Ajax (imitating gas chambers). This I don't believe was driven by true racism just a way to shock and irritate the Ajax fans. Holland is a very tolerant country, there is virtually zero bigotry. The way you say you're a Celtic fan and ergo support the IRA wouldn't happen in Holland (but then the history's different).

I recently read an article stating that there is a historic link between Fword and Celtic fans dating back to when they played each other in the early seventies. When Fword came to Glasgow to play Rangers in the Uefa Cup last month the fans headed off en masse to the Celtic Fan shop to buy shirts e.t.c.


-- Anonymous, April 19, 2002

F.Y.I. from DailySoccer.com


Ajax supporters group calls for English measures to counter hooliganism AMSTERDAM, April 19 (DS) The Ajax Supporters Association has sent a letter to the Dutch Parliaments asking for the adoption of a version of the English model to counter football hooliganism. The Ajax Supporter's Club (the biggest in Holland with over 75,000 members) suggested that a no-nonsense policy with unconditional prison sentences should be employed. The association feels that the current lack of trouble at matches in England, in comparison to that in the Netherlands has to do with the strictness of the law employed there. Supporters who get into serious trouble, know that an unconditional prison sentence is awaiting them. As well as that, a stadium ban is put on the supporter, who must report to the police on match days.

Violence between supporters has cast a shadow over a number of Dutch games this season, and was again apparent during the Amstel Cup semi- final meeting between Ajax 2 and FC Utrecht at the Amsterdam Arena. This match was clearly the catalyst for today's disappointing news that the Amstel Cup final between Ajax 1 and Utrecht will be played in a half-empty stadium. Only 5,900 Ajax supporters and 15,000 fans of Utrecht will be welcome at De Kuip Stadium on the 12th of May. The KNVB (Dutch FA) chose to take up these extreme safety measures after discussions with Ajax, FC Utrecht, the Feijenoord Stadium, railway police, the Dutch Railways and the Rotterdam council and police.

The Rotterdam council have arranged that special trains will bring the maximum of 5,900 Ajax supporters from Amsterdam, while Utrecht can take 15,000 supporters over with buses. These tight measures of only allowing supporters to travel with public transport will ensure that the two groups can't meet each other. The fact that Ajax will be given far fewer tickets is reportedly a result of the higher safety requirements that the police and council have placed on rail transport. The fact that only another 9,000 tickets will be given to various guests means that De Kuip, which has a capacity of 50,000, will have about 20,000 vacant places for the Dutch Cup Final.

-- Anonymous, April 19, 2002

I am a Celtic supporter. I was in amsterdam and paradise when we beat your team in the UEFA cup. I loved both games. A few weeks ago Feyenoord beat our enemies rangers and also our ex-celt hero was in the side and scored two wonderfree-kicks, pierre van hooijdonk. I myself bought a feyenoord top not as a supporter but as a wind up and to annoy as many scummy orange rangers loyalist bastards as possible. However, I am a republican and I.R.A supporter and as I am completely ignorant of dutch football on the large, I was hoping someone would explain the politics surrounding Feyenoord. Are they a fascist team? do they have racial prejudices and tendancies to be right-wing? I have the top however I have not wore it yet as I would hate to support such beliefs. Please someone answer my questions. TIOCFAIDH AR LA. good luck in the season this year, it seems to be in the bag.

-- Anonymous, April 01, 2002

The folks at independent fanzine 'De Ajax Ster' ('The Ajax Star') have designed a new Ajax away jersey. Here's the Ajax-1 squad posing in the new strip on Dam Square in Amsterdam...

It's a shame that most of the reports on the D.A.S. website are in Dutch only - most of the time they're absolutely hilarious... :-)

-- Anonymous, October 21, 2001

i am an israeli, it was always a dream for me to see ajax playing. i went to the game against apolon , and i was amazed for the poisitive side of the word. i loved this f-side thing and i dont think that any jew should feel ofended by that, the opposite!!!!!!!!! it is proud for me as a jew to see israelis and jewish symbols in europe's football stadiums. f-side forever by the way, i am a supporter of hapoel beer sheva, the first team of yosi ben ayun, and i am waiting every year for ajax to revench the 10- 0 lost that we had in roda 4 years ago

-- Anonymous, September 24, 2001

Hear! Hear!

-- Anonymous, September 17, 2001

This is actually not a message *to* the F-Side, but a message *from* a devoted Ajax supporter standing in the F-Side (in this case: *me*).

I just wanted to send a great big 'F*#K YOU' to all the folks who left during the final ten minutes of the AZ game. I'm glad you all missed the friggin' goal and I really feel those two unexpected extra points are *ours* (the supporters) - and not yours. *Our* team won; *your* team didn't do better than a disappointing 0-0 draw.

It happens all the f*#&ing time and it really, really annoys me. Is that the kind of "supporters" you are? Is getting to the car five minutes sooner than the rest of the crowd really more important to you than supporting Ajax in a 0-0 game which they can still win?? What kind of tremendously important stuff do you have to take care of at home on a rainy Sunday afternoon?? What difference do those 20 minutes make?? You know how you can win even more time?? By simply staying at home. You're welcome to do that, for all I care...

I have more in common with real, devoted feyenoord fans than with you people. (Am I saying this? Yes, I am).

-- Anonymous, September 17, 2001

Well Trent, Ajax-Celtic was in fact one of the most atmospheric games in the history of the Amsterdam Arena! Fact is that the Ajax-board have kicked out 7000 or more Ajax-supporters from the Nortside upper Tier, leaving it to Celtic supporters, because there people in Glasgow 'were very interested'. We missed those people, really. The're a new group on the Northside Upper Tier called Ajax Ultra's. Ajax-Celtic would have been their first home game. Now we have the Soutside lower tier left (the F-Side) and a few hundred fans on the southside upper tier, short side. A total of, let's say, 8000 fans, the rest is in fact silent. They are gloryhunters, trendhoppers or plain tourists. The never sing an Ajax song! They haven't done that since the opening of the arena and they aren't gonna sing one in the future either! 42000 Ajax fans? Well 8000 is low, let's make it 4000 really fanatic people and then 6000 less fanatic and 32000 silent people. It's the truth, sadly. But there's light at the end of the tunnel! We actually did sing a lot of pro Ajax songs, but 8000 really fanatix Scots outrank us actually. But like I said there's a new group on the north side, called the Ajax Ultra's. Their 'debut' was against Roda at home. They kept singing positively about Ajax almost THE WHOLE MATCH. Hell, they even were on local TV! Also F-Siders, Ajax-supporters on the north side and even some roda-supporters have praised them. So maybe the next time you'll watch an Ajax home game, you'll hear Ajax songs!

-- Anonymous, August 23, 2001

i tll you why we didn't sing against celtic.

over the last 2 years we supported ajax so many times and they never showed us that they dicirved it to be support.but against celtic the other ajax supporters in the arena wouldn't sing and if 8000 people keep singing is logic that you didn't hear a thing from ajax songs.

vak 127

-- Anonymous, August 16, 2001

Question: Why does the F-Side always sing anti-Feyenoord songs and tributes to former Ajax players, rather than supporting the team we have now and trying to inspire the team if the team is in a dire situation?

Fact: Against Celtic, the 8000 Celtic supporters outsang the 42000 Ajax supporters. Don't blame this on the people who don't really support the team. I didn't hear a peep from ANY Ajax supporters until the goal was scored. Why wasn't the F-Side trying to inspire Ajax while we were losing 2-0 and 3-1? Instead, only anti-Feyenoord songs were heard. Why was the F-Side singing anti-Feyenoord songs while Ajax was losing?

-- Anonymous, August 10, 2001

The F-side are the only true supporters of Ajax!! three quarter of the Amsterdam ArenA are Fake supporters!! The always leave when Ajax is behind!!! I'm proud to be a part of the F-side! but I'm against violence! But if it's used against us I'll use it too.

Mokum Hooligans! 4-ever!!!!

Greetings, Mark in tha Dark

-- Anonymous, August 10, 2001

In the seventees,Ajax'rivals began calling Ajax supporters "Jews",because Amsterdam has always had a large population of Jewish people.Instead of taking it as an insult,they took it as a compliment.Ajax supporters have been called "jews",ever since!

-- Anonymous, August 08, 2001

AFC Ajax Amsterdam, Jews 4 Ever!

respect 2 f-side, fanaticz, ultras

-- Anonymous, June 22, 2001

The history of hooliganism in Holland? Utrecht with their Bunnik-side were the first, as far as i know. And about the F-side the were one of the biggest and one of the most dangerous in the seventies and eighties, the other big ones were especially utrecht(bunnik-side), Feyemoord(Vak S), Fc Den Haag.

And Menno from The Hague; You´re so proud about it?? Look where and what your club is at the moment, it´s nothing anymore, they´re playing Toto-division for years now in empty stadiums!! I think you can partly blame your so called hooligans/supporters for that. That´s indeed something to be proud of, NOT!!

-- Anonymous, May 14, 2001

Apparently, we have the same name. But we're soooo different.

If you want to have the 'credit', feel free to take it. And don't forget to spread the word.

-- Anonymous, May 10, 2001

Check ur history man !!! Ajax was certainly not the first club with a side and also not the first ones top introduce hooliganism in Holland, that credit goes to Fc Groningen. And as far as fear goes, The F-Side stands way behind clubs like Feijenoord, Fc Den Haag and even Fc Den Bosch.


N-Side 4-ever

-- Anonymous, May 10, 2001

The old F.Side was certainly not responsible for introducing hooligansim in Holland. Feyenoord had the first share of real hooliganism although it was not an 'organized' group. In the mid- seventies FC Utrecht's Bunnikzijde (Bunnikside) was the first organized group to follow the example of the English firms. A slightly organized group that fanatically supported and followed their club everywhere. In the very beginning of the F.Side the F.Side received several beatings from the Bunnikside who were in those days known in all of Europe and were Holland's number 1 side. Other clubs didn't want to stay behind and within a few years just about every club had a 'side' that supported the club very fanatically. But part of the side-culture was engaging in confrontations with the sides of other clubs. Logically, the sides in the 'big' cities were the biggest and most-feared. FC utrecht (Bunnik-side), FC Den Haag (North- side - famous for home-made explosives), feyenoord (Vak-S and later SCF) and Ajax (F-side/Vak-M) were usually the clubs that caused most trouble.

In the eighties the old F.side changed. In 1989 an iron bar was thrown at the Austria Wien-goalie from the F.side. This resulted in a one-year European ban for Ajax. But it also resulted in section F turning into somekind of fortress. A total of three fences, complete with barb-wire were put up. The old hardcore then decided to move to section M (Vak-M) from where it was easier to attack visiting sides and where one could still view the match without having to peek through all those fences. From here on the story gets quite complicated because the ajax-hardcore was still called F.side while most people on the F.side had nothing to do with the violence but did think it gave them some sort of status to be in section F. Still, Vak- M or F-side can't be seen seperately, there is an overlap. But the F.side is mostly just fanatic support and sometimes some simple vandalism while Vak M is the 'real' hardcore. Complicated story, but I just wanted make it a bit clearer.

-- Anonymous, November 13, 2000

I4d just like to add: Menno Pot is right in stating that many Jews lived in the Eastern part of Amsterdam: however, I4d like to point out that there were also large concentrations of Jews in Southern Amsterdam, particularly the wealthier and more assimilated ones (remember that before WWII Amsterdam was similar to New York City today, with a huge Jewish population which formed an integral part of the city). For a long time, Blauw-Wit, a very middle-class team who eventually amalgamted with DWS and de Voleweijckers (Western and Northern A4dam respectively) to become FC Amsterdam and then promptly go bust in te early Eighties, were considered far more Jewish than Ajax, as was AFC, a well-known amateur club. It should also be noted that, in Rotterdam, Xerxes and Sparta had lots of Jewish fans-a fact lost on today4s Rotterdammers, as Sparta4s fans are just as guilty of anti-Semitic chants as Feyenoord4s. In any case, the F-Side adopted the Israeli flag as their emblem mainly because aupporters of Feyenoord, ADO (from the Hague-a club with some of Holland4s worst hooligans, whose players sported Swastika ambands in the war years) and FC Utrecht consistently spewed anti-Semitic vitriol at Bennie Muller and Sjak Swart, as well as at Jaap van Praag, chairman in the halycon days. The appelation stuck even after these people had retired from the scene, and was adopted as a sort of badge of pride by the fans. I personally think the F-Side may also have drawn inspiration from Tottenham4s supporters, who started calling themselves "Yid Army" sometime in the Seventies. Footage from that period clearly shows Israeli flags on the terraces of the Paxton End and the Shelf. Seeing as the various Dutch "sides" were originally modelled on British terrace groups, Tottenham4s fans, who had gained notoriety in Holland in 1974 (when they had starte huge riots in the Feyenoord stadium), would have constituted an obvious reference point. In addition, large numbers of F-Siders wear Spurs shirts and other attributes to games (the South side of the Arena is probably the only place in mainland Europe still mercifully free of Arsenal shirts). About the Israeli connection: Bizarrely, although most Brits and quite a few Dutchmen are aware of Spurs4 reputation as a Jewish club in the real sense of the word (a huge proportion of the crowd at White hart Lane is Jewish, and a majority of London4s Jews support them), most Israelis aren4t. Thus, although loads of Israelis went positively mad with enthusiasm when Ajax played Hapoel Haifa, the vast majority of Israelis would probably remain indifferent to Spurs playing in Israel. Having lived in Israel,I consider this a major tragedy, particularly as many Israelis have taken to supporting that OTHER North London team mentioned above...

-- Anonymous, August 17, 2000

Good point..............At least the F-side isn't the most violent hooligans in Holland!

-- Anonymous, July 27, 2000

As a Jew and an Ajax supporter I am not offended by the use of the Star of David. I'm honored that their is a connection between my team and my religious heritage, however slight. For those who find it offensive, what if the F-Side had gone the other way and decided to adopt the swastika as their emblem? Now that would be offensive!

-- Anonymous, January 28, 2000

You're starting a trciky topic here, because there's been a lot of fuzz about the F-Side, lately. Anyway... The F-Side is the name of the most fanatical part of the Ajax fans. The history of the F-Side starts just after 1976, when the fanatical, young Ajax-fans decided to buy season tickets for the same section in the old stadium De Meer. They chose the F-section, behind the east goal of De Meer. In the ArenA, the F-Side is behind the south goal, mainly in sections 126, 127 and 128. They're very well known for their yells, singing and their devotion to Ajax, they're always travelling along to away- games. They're basically responsible for everything that brings atmosphere in the stadium, including banners, fireworks etc. Almost every year, they collect money on the stands to present leaving players fireworks shows and presents, which is much appreciated.

However, not everything about the F-Side's reputation is that positive. Right after the very first start, around 1976, the F-Side has basically introduced the phenomenon of hooliganism in Dutch football. Nowadays, clubs like Feyenoord, FC Utrecht, PSV and FC Twente are dealing with violent 'sides' as well, but the F-Side was the first, and (as every Ajax fan can tell from away game experiences) still one of the most feared in Holland and Europe. These days, the F-Side does NOT solely consist of hooligans, but they're still there, causing a lot of trouble every now and then.

That's what's clearly positive and negative about the F-Side. The Jewish matter is much more complex: some think it's the F-Side's way to pay respect to Jews they're associated with; others regard "Jews" as a provocative name. The F-Side started calling themselves "Ajax Jews" just before 1980, arousing numerous offensive yells by other fanatical supporters. Ajax, to make that clear, was not founded as a Jewish club. However, Amsterdam has always had the largest Jewish population in the country. They were concentrated in the east part of town, where Ajax was founded in 1900.

Several of the most important people in the Ajax history were Jews, including 'Mister Ajax' Sjaak Swart, who has played more games in Ajax-1 than any other player, and the most succesfull chairman in the club's history: Jaap van Praag. His son and current chairman, Michael van Praag, is not Jewish, because his mother wasn't. In the thirties, Ajax had a relatively high number of Jewish members. It was for that reason, that other supporters started calling Ajax a "jew's club", or (ironically) "the club of noses". Note: this was far before the Second World War, and therefore had no bitter connotation.

After the War, most jewish inhabitants of Amsterdam did not return home from the German concentration camps. The number of jewish members was no longer significant, but the reputation remained. Ajax was still called a jewish team. The F-Side decided to adopt that name in pride, and started calling themselves Jews, wearing Jewish flags and banners and stars of David.

The Ajax board is not happy with the Jewish thing, and would always say that Ajax was NOT founded by Jews and that Dutch Jews feel offended by the F-Side. The F-Side would say: the offensive yells of opponents were there fifty years before the F-Side adoption of the name "Jews", which therefore was a reaction and not a provocation. Earlier this year, the fans of Israeli team Hapoel Haifa welcomed Ajax supporters on their website as "brothers and sisters". This made the F-Side's belief stronger that not every Jew feels offended by the use of Jewish symbols by fanatical football supporters.

Decide for yourself, noting that I am NOT an F-Sider, but just a fanatical supporter, detesting violence of any kind.

-- Anonymous, January 28, 2000

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