FIFA again bars Iraq from hosting football friendlies

Baghdad, July 4 (IANS) World soccer body FIFA has again barrd Iraq from holding any friendly football matches due to soaring violence, just three months after the ban was lifted.

Iraq received the notification from FIFA Wednesday and the ban will be in force until further notice, reports Xinhua.

FIFA has issued a resolution to prevent any friendly matches in Iraq after increasing attacks on playgrounds and an assault in which Mohamed Abbas, the coach of the Karbala football club, was killed.

FIFA decided March 21 to lift a ban that had been imposed on Iraq to prevent it from hosting any friendly matches.

On March 26, Baghdad hosted a friendly between Iraq and Syria and the home team won 2-1.

On May 27, the Iraq lost 0-1 to visiting Liberia in another friendly in Baghdad.

High-profile bomb attacks are still common in Iraq despite the dramatic decrease in violence since its peak in 2006 and 2007when the country was engulfed in sectarian killings.

The UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) said Monday 761 Iraqis were killed and another 1,771 were wounded in acts of terrorism and violence in June.

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