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News Brief


The Palestinian national soccer team played its first match at its new West Bank stadium.

The Palestinians tied Jordan, 1-1, at the 6,500-seat stadium in al-Ram, near Jerusalem.

FIFA, the international soccer federation, financed the construction of the stadium.

The Palestinian squad, which has been affiliated with FIFA for a decade, has hosted international games in other countries, often Jordan, because of the lack of an adequate stadium and security issues.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter attended the game and called it “historic.” Blatter also met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and laid a wreath at the tomb of Yasser Arafat during his visit.

The French press agency reported that several Jordanian players of Palestinian origin knelt and kissed the artificial turf when they took the field.

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