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Iraqi government says it didn’t order soccer raid
BAGHDAD _ The Iraqi government says it did not order a recent raid on the offices of the country’s soccer federation.
International soccer’s ruling body warned Baghdad not to meddle in the federation’s affairs ahead of elections for a new president this week.
Men in military-style uniforms who appeared at the federation’s offices Sunday with arrest warrants for senior soccer officials were not acting in an official capacity, government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh told The Associated Press. No law enforcement agency authorized the raid and a committee will investigate, he added.
“There were no instructions from any official agency to carry out this raid,” al-Dabbagh said.
Members of the Iraqi Football Association are to meet in the Kurdish city of Irbil on Saturday to choose a new president.
“FIFA would like to recall that any governmental interference in the electoral process is subject to statutory measures which can include a suspension,” the statement said.
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