FIFA removes Indonesia as hosts of U-20 World Cup
JAKARTA - The International Football Federation (FIFA) has removed Indonesia as organiser of this year’s Under-20 World Cup after several of the country’s politicians objected Israeli team’s participation.
The decision came after a meeting between FIFA president Gianni Infantino and Indonesian Football Federation president Erick Thohir in Doha.
"FIFA has decided, due to the current circumstances, to remove Indonesia as the host of the FIFA U-20 World Cup 2023,” FIFA said, adding that disciplinary action against the PSSI might be decided soon.
The federation in a statement issued on its website said that it will name a new host in the next few days, adding that the dates of the tournament currently remain unchanged.
Despite the decision, FIFA will lend a helping hand to assist the PSSI and the government in the transformation process of their football following the Kanjuruhan Stadium stampede in Malang, East Java last year where 135 people died.
"Members of the FIFA team will continue to be present in Indonesia in the coming months and will provide the required assistance to the PSSI,” it said.
On Tuesday, Indonesian President Joko Widodo was reported saying the country had dispatched Erick to meet with FIFA officer bearers to find a solution to the problem.
Joko Widodo had provided assurance to Indonesians that Israel’s participation in the tournament does not in anyway undermine the country’s support for the Palestinian cause.
The B-20 World Cup matches involving teams from 24 nations were supposed to take place in six locations in Indonesia - Bali, Bandung, Jakarta, Palembang, Solo and Surabaya - from 20 May-11 June.
Indonesia was chosen as the host in 2019 for the 2023 edition but Israel’s participation was only made known in July 2022. - BERNAMA