FIFA lifts Belize suspension

BERNE, (Reuters) – Belize’s international  suspension has been provisionally lifted by FIFA and their  World Cup qualifier at home to Montserrat will go ahead but on  neutral territory, soccer’s governing body said yesterday.

The Central Americans were banned on June 17, two days after  beating Montserrat 5-2 in the opening match of the 2014 World  Cup qualifying campaign, over government interference in the  Belize federation (FFB).

FIFA called off the return match in Belize after the  country’s government, refusing to recognise either the FFB or  the team as representatives of the country, said it would not  provide security for the game.

“The provisional measure will allow the return leg of the  qualifying tie for the 2014 FIFA World Cup between Belize and  Montserrat, originally due to be played on 19 June 2011, to  finally take place,” FIFA said.

“This return match will now be played before 17 July 2011  outside of Belize in order to avoid the risk of the Belizean  authorities not providing security guarantees.”

FIFA added that the suspension would be automatically  reinstated on Aug. 15 “should the FFB not be able to  definitively settle the issues at stake with the authorities.”

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