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Soccer Balls & Nukes

11:30 AM, Nov 24, 2006 • By DANIEL MCKIVERGAN
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Evidently, the world soccer federation is a tougher outfit than the UN Security Council. target=_blank>From the AP:

ZURICH, Switzerland - Iran was suspended from international soccer by FIFA on Thursday because of government interference with the country's soccer federation.

The decision was made Wednesday at an emergency council meeting of soccer's world governing body. FIFA said it had given Iran a Nov. 15 deadline to reinstate elected soccer federation president Mohammed Dadgan and comply with FIFA regulations.

"This deadline was not met," FIFA said.

FIFA said Iran was not abiding by rules regarding the "independence of the decision-making process of the football governing body in each country and the way in which changes in the leadership of associations are brought about."

Iran, which played in the 2006 World Cup and has qualified for the 2007 Asian Cup, will be reinstated only after drafting new statutes and organizing a new election under the supervision of FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation.

"The lifting of this suspension would depend on the above road map being accepted and fully implemented by the relevant authorities in Tehran," FIFA said.