Iraqi Soccer Team's World Cup Hopes Revived

Soccer's world governing body has lifted a ban on Iraq, keeping alive the nation's World Cup qualifying hopes. The Iraqi soccer team is considered a symbol of national unity.

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NOAH ADAMS, host:

And we have an update about another story from Iraq: People there are breathing a sigh of relief now that a ban has been lifted - at least temporarily. It would have kept Iraq's popular soccer team from playing internationally for one year. That decision comes from FIFA, the international soccer association. Earlier this week, FIFA suspended the Iraqi team. That was because the Iraqi government disbanded its Olympic committee. FIFA rules require national Olympic committees be free from government interference. The soccer team suspension brought dismay across Iraq, where the team is a rare source of unity. FIFA has requested that Iraq send a delegation to Switzerland to explain itself further. But in the meantime, the Lions of Mesopotamia will be taking the field Sunday against Australia for a game that will help determine whether Iraq gets to play in the biggest event in soccer, the World Cup.

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