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Ghana wants FIFA meeting over Cairo security plans - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Ghana's Asamoah Gyan, left, battles with Egypt's Mohamed Naguib and Ahmed Shedid, right, during their World Cup playoff soccer match in Kumasi, Ghana, Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013. Ghana stunned Egypt 6-1 in the first leg of their World Cup playoff on Tuesday, with Gyan's fifth-minute goal kicking off a dominant performance that makes the Black Stars overwhelming favorites to be one of the five African teams in Brazil next year. (AP Photo)

Ghana’s Asamoah Gyan, left, battles with Egypt’s Mohamed Naguib and Ahmed Shedid, right, during their World Cup playoff soccer match in Kumasi, Ghana, Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013. (AP Photo)

Accra and London, AP/Asharq Al-Awsat—Ghana’s sports minister wants to meet with FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke over security for the World Cup playoff against Egypt in Cairo.

Sports Minister Elvis Afriyie Ankrah wrote in a letter to Valcke on Monday that Ghana still has “genuine security concerns” over the November 19 game, which FIFA ruled could go ahead in the troubled capital, the first international there in two years.

Ankrah has asked for details of safety guarantees made by Egyptian authorities, which prompted FIFA to allow the second leg to be played with fans at a Cairo military stadium.

The Ghanaian FA (GFA) are asking to speak with FIFA president Sepp Blatter in regards to the safety guarantees of their players, staff, supporters and media when they travel to Cairo for the second leg of the World Cup playoff. Ghana leads 6–1 on aggregate.

Tensions in Cairo will likely increase this month, with the trial of former president Mohammed Mursi starting on Monday.

The GFA sent a letter to FIFA on Monday to ask that the game to be relocated because of the current state of political unrest within the country. This prompted a response from the Egyptian government to the Ghanaians, reassuring them that they will only allow 30,000 fans into the stadium and under heavy security.

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) allowed Cairo football club Al-Ahly to play in the CAF Champions League Final against Orlando Pirates in Cairo and the smooth running of this match was a factor in helping FIFA decide not to change venues.

In a letter to the GFA, FIFA also revealed that the decision not to make an adjustment on the venue was founded on ‘guarantees’ from the Egyptian government and FA to step up security levels for the event.

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat

Asharq Al-Awsat is the world’s premier pan-Arab daily newspaper, printed simultaneously each day on four continents in 14 cities. Launched in London in 1978, Asharq Al-Awsat has established itself as the decisive publication on pan-Arab and international affairs, offering its readers in-depth analysis and exclusive editorials, as well as the most comprehensive coverage of the entire Arab world.

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