The Executive Committee of the Confederation of Independent Football Associations (CONIFA) wishes to clarify several matters reported in an article by the Jersey Evening Post published on 7 March 2019.
A CONIFA spokesperson said:
“The safety of players, staff and spectators is of upmost concern to CONIFA. Two CONIFA Executive Committee members have recently returned from a site visit to the proposed host cities for the 2020 World Football Cup in Somaliland, and spoke very positively of the facilities. During the visit, the CONIFA representatives met with senior officials from Somaliland’s security services, who are in the process of developing a comprehensive security plan for the tournament. The tournament has the full backing of the Somaliland government. While we will continue to monitor developments closely, and always welcome the views of our members, at the present time we have complete confidence in Somaliland successfully hosting the 2020 World Football Cup.
“It is inaccurate to suggest that Somaliland was only awarded the tournament after other expected bids from Tokyo or Seattle did not materialise. The Somaliland bid was objectively strong and satisfied all bidding criteria. Additionally, the CONIFA Executive Committee welcomed the opportunity to hold a tournament outside of Europe for the first time. Given CONIFA’s membership comes from five continents, and we are committed to represent them equally, the Executive Committee felt that Somaliland represented a compelling option.
“We are looking forward to welcoming the participating teams to Somaliland in 2020.”