The heads of the football associations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, Iraq and Yemen have unanimously agreed to hold the 25th Arabian Gulf Football Cup (Gulf 25) in the Iraqi city of Basra.
This came during a meeting held on Tuesday via videoconference and was attended by Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the UAE Football Association (UAEFA), a WAM report said.
The meeting was also attended by Humaid Ahmed Al Tayer, UAEFA member and Mohammed Abdullah Hazzam Al Dhaheri, UAEFA Secretary General.
"Football, the most popular sport in the world, is currently going through major challenges that we can overcome by more cooperation and creative initiatives," Sheikh Rashid said.
"We are very pleased that Iraq won the right to host the 25th edition of the Arabian Gulf Cup and we are confident that the Iraqi Governorate of Basra will be well prepared for this mega event. Football means a lot to the people of Iraq, the cradle of civilisation and enlightenment," he added.
According to the regulations of the Arab Gulf Cup Football Association, Kuwait was chosen to be an alternative to Iraq in hosting the Arabian Gulf Cup 25, after the Kuwaiti Federation submitted a request to host as well in case Basra was not finalized.
The Iraqi President Barham Salih congratulated Iraq and Basra on this occasion, he said in a tweet: "From the midst of suffering, determination and challenge are born. Yesterday we were devastated for our martyrs who died in the painful hospital fire incident and before that the heavy sacrifices in the face of violence and terrorism that is angered by out coexistence, and today the Iraqis obtain the entitlement that befits them to host the Gulf Cup 25 championship in Basra."
"Congratulations to Iraq and to Basra," he added.