AFC cautions Iraq over government interference

Malaysia, Oct 10, 2013: AFC has asked for an explanation from the Iraq Football Association on the influence of its government on deciding the national team’s participation in the next Gulf Cup.

According to reports, the heads of football associations who participate in the Gulf Cup, have unanimously decided to shift venue from the Iraqi city of Basra to Jeddah in Saudi Arabia citing incomplete infrastructure and FIFA’s ban on Iraq hosting international games.

However, the Iraqi government reacted furiously to the decision by announcing the withdrawal of the team from the tournament. It’s the right of the Iraq Football Association to decide on the interest of their team, fans and other stakeholders. The government should not interfere in the football affairs, AFC said in a statement. Both FIFA and AFC do not tolerate any interference in football matters by the government or any other bodies and AFC would like to ask them to stay away in the interest of Iraqi football. —- AFC

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