Jan 25, 2016, 11:05 PM
News Code: 81935533
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AFC sets deadline for Iran, Saudi Arabia

Tehran, Jan 25, IRNA – The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has set March 15, 2016 as the date by when Iran and Saudi Arabia should resolve their ongoing issues.

Following the weeks-long diplomatic dispute between Iran and Saudi Arabia, AFC Competitions Committee decided to amend the schedule for the 2016 AFC Champions League.
In order to give more time for the AFC administration to obtain independent evaluation on the safety and security situation between Saudi Arabia and Iran, the Competitions Committee decided to switch match days in each of the four groups.
The Committee agreed to set March 15, 2016 as the date by when the evaluation should be completed; if there has not been a return to normal relations by then, all matches between teams from Saudi Arabia and Iran will be played at neutral venues for the rest of the competition.
The Saudi Arabian Football Federation and United Arab Emirates Football Association asked for the switch of any national and club games to assure the safety and security of the teams and accompanying delegations.
The Iranian Football Federation (IRIFF) in turn said that its expectation from the AFC was to disallow political interference in football and reiterated that Iran was one of the safest countries in the region, MNA reported.
IRIFF also said it was committed to ensuring the safety and security of all the national teams and clubs participating in various international competitions.
The Committee decided that even though there is no change in the schedule for matches between clubs from the UAE and Iran, the IRIFF will be requested to provide a full security plan and guarantee to the UAE for matches played in Iran.
AFC stressed that it will monitor these matches extremely carefully and will appoint AFC security officers for them.