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Last Updated: Tuesday, 30 September, 2003, 15:14 GMT 16:14 UK
Libya still keen on joint bid
Osasu Obayiuwana
BBC Sport, Zurich

Sepp Blatter and Al-Saadi Gadaffi
Al-Saadi Gadaffi has been heavily involved in Libya's 2010 bid
Libya's World Cup bid committee insists their plan to co-host the 2010 finals with Tunisia is a realistic objective, despite Fifa's opposition to the idea.

"Fifa made the exception for South Korea and Japan for 2002, so why can't they allow us to do the same?," asked Musa Shaibani, an executive member of Libya's Football Federation.

Shaibani, who is part of the delegation that has made the country's official presentation to Fifa, said their idea would pose no logistical problems for football's world governing body.

"We are aware of why Fifa has been against the co-hosting idea but the important difference between what we are planning and what happened in 2002 is that we share a border with our Tunisian brothers and share the same culture.

"I sincerely believe that our plan is a realisable objective."

But the Libyans' recent decision to promote a co-hosting bid with their neighbours has not stopped the two nations from submitting their individual presentations.

Security concerns

Meanwhile, Egypt has dismissed claims that the security situation in the Middle East makes the country unsuitable to host the 2010 finals.

"We are one of the most secure countries in the world," said bid coordinator Hicham Azmy.

"Since 1997 (when the Egypt suffered a terrorist attack), we have hosted high-level international peace conferences and had the American president visit our country.

"These events could not have taken place if we were not a secure country."

French consultants were recruited for the preparation of the final bid book being submitted to Fifa, a step taken to benefit from the hosting expertise of other nations.

"We need the expertise from people that have organised previous World Cups, so we know what we must do to have a first-class candidature," Azmy said.

Zambia's Kalusha Bwalya in action
Zambia's Kalusha Bwalya backing South Africa's 2010 bid
Ghanaian football legend Abedi Pele delivered an address to Fifa on behalf of the South Africa campaign.

The three-time African Footballer of the Year and executive member of the Ghana Football Association, made a speech of support before the presentation was made.

Alongside Pele, Kalusha Bwalya - now Zambia's Technical Director - is one of two African greats named as goodwill ambassadors for the only sub-saharan bid in the 2010 race, following Nigeria's withdrawal on Monday.


SEE ALSO
Libya plan joint 2010 bid
05 Sep 03  |  African
North Africans mull joint bid
15 Jul 03  |  African
2010 World Cup bids confirmed
03 Jun 03  |  African
Libya's $6 billion World Cup plan
19 Mar 03  |  African



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