- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Soccer fans attending the World Cup in Moscow this summer will be restricted from purchasing alcohol outside of official sports stadiums and viewing areas, Russian media reported.

Moscow will ban alcohol sales throughout the city the day before and during World Cup 2018 matches, excluding stadiums and FIFA-sanctioned “fan zones,” said Kirill Malyshkin, the deputy head of Moscow’s regional security and anti-corruption department, Russia media reported Tuesday.

“Executive power bodies have set the borders where the sale and consumption of alcohol will be banned […] on the eve of a football World Cup match and the day it is held,” Mr. Malyshkin said at an event in Lima, Peru, according to the privately-owned Interfax newswire and an English-language translation published by The Moscow Times.

Additionally the city of Moscow is assembling a “list of hospitals and clinics” where intoxicated fans can seek medical treatment if necessary, Mr. Malyshkin added.

A total of 12 matches are expected to take place in Moscow when Russia hosts the 2018 World Cup from June 14 to July 15, and the tournament’s first and final games are both scheduled to be held at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium, a 81,000-seat facility regarded as one of Europe’s largest.

Russia’s Education Ministry said last year that university campuses would be used for fan zones during the World Cup, and the head of Moscow’s Sports and Tourist Department previously announced plans to build a viewing area in front of the main building at the Moscow State University designed for accommodating 40,000 spectators.

World Cup 2018 matches outside of Moscow during the monthlong tournament are scheduled in cities this summer including St. Petersburg, Sochi, Volgograd and Kaliningrad, among others.

The Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union announced in February that travelers attending the World Cup may bring otherwise banned substances including cocaine, cannabis and heroin as long as they’re accompanied by supporting medical documents.

“Security officers will monitor the enforcement of rules for carrying prescription drugs to stadium grounds at checkpoints,” Russia’s 2018 World Cup Organizing Committee said previously.

Qatari authorities previously said the Middle Eastern nations plans to ban the public consumption of alcohol, including drinking inside stadiums, when it hosts the 2022 World Cup in 2022, The Washington Post reported in 2016.

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