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Egypt given all-clear to play 2 friendly games

Interior ministry says it will provide security for Egypt’s scheduled friendlies against Botswana and Kenya later this month

Hatem Maher, Friday 10 Feb 2012
Egypt
Egypt's soccer team players (Photo: Reuters)
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The interior ministry has given Egypt the all-clear to play scheduled friendly games against Botswana and Kenya on 21 and 23 February respectively.

Authorities have suspended domestic football activities in the country since the Port Said tragedy, which left 74 fans killed and scores injured following the end of an Egyptian Premier League game earlier this month.

However, Egypt have been allowed to go ahead with their plans to play two friendlies as they prepare for the opening African Cup of Nations qualifier against Central Africa on 29 February.

“The interior ministry has agreed to secure the games against Botswana and Kenya upon our request,” Egyptian Football Association spokesman Azmy Megahed said.

“The venue that will host the game will be determined on Sunday, after which we will contact the interior ministry again to find out whether the matches will be played behind closed doors or not.”

The Premier League has been postponed for an indefinite period amid calls for authorities to call it off.

A handful of Egyptian footballers, including renowned Ahly playmaker Mohamed Abou-Treika, vowed not to carry on playing until the culprits of the Port Said disaster were brought to justice.

Egypt have asked the Confederation of African Football to postpone their game against Central Africa, citing the country’s current state of mourning.

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