Sun, Jun 23, 2013 - Page 7 News List

Rousseff calls for unity in Brazil

THE BEAUTIFUL GAME:Despite recent unrest, FIFA insisted on Friday that the soccer World Cup must be held next year in Brazil as planned, no matter what

AFP, BRASILIA

However, the secretary-general of world soccer’s governing body FIFA insisted on Friday that the World Cup must be held next year in Brazil as planned, no matter what happens.

“The Confederations Cup is taking place in Brazil and the World Cup must be held in Brazil,” Jerome Valcke told local media ahead of a meeting with World Cup organizers.

“There is no plan B,” he added.

Earlier on Friday, FIFA said it has no plans to scrap the Confederations Cup currently under way, and that no team wants to pull out despite the huge protests.

“At no stage has FIFA considered or discussed abandoning the Confederations Cup with the local authorities,” FIFA media chief Pekka Odriozola said. “We are monitoring the situation with the authorities.”

Meanwhile, smaller protests erupted anew on Friday in several cities, including Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Curitiba and Fortaleza.

In Rio’s western district of Barra da Tijuca, television footage showed young hooligans ransacking a car dealership and looting an appliance store.

Early on Friday, 100 hooligans also ransacked the municipal council in Caucaia, a suburb of the northeastern city of Fortaleza, according to press reports.

The unrest expanded from anger over hikes in mass transit fares into a wider protest against corruption and inadequate public services in the world’s seventh-largest economy.

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