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Cameroon latest team to want change

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DOUALA, Cameroon (AP) - Cameroon is the latest team in African Cup qualifying to express fears over Ebola and request a venue change for a game, this time over another outbreak of the deadly virus in Congo.

Cameroon's request relates to its Sept. 6 qualifier in the huge central African country, where 13 people have died in a new outbreak which experts say is unrelated to the one in West Africa that has killed more than 1,400 people.

Cameroon football federation President Joseph Owona said late Wednesday that he had asked the Confederation of African Football to move next month's qualifier in Congo to ''an Ebola-free venue.''

''We are now waiting for their reaction and I'll also want to add that we're working with authorities in charge of Ebola prevention in Cameroon for instructions on how to proceed,'' Owona told The Associated Press. ''It's a sufficiently delicate matter.''

Cameroon's federation was doing ''what we ought to do,'' Owona said, after the World Health Organization was informed of the new outbreak in Congo.

CAF was already forced to move qualifiers out of Sierra Leone and Guinea, two of the worst-affected countries in the West African outbreak. CAF will reassess the situation in those nations in mid-September, but insisted games elsewhere should go ahead as planned. That might not be possible with governments now overruling soccer bodies to prevent the spread of Ebola.

Owona said the Cameroon football federation would follow its government's instructions over the trip to Congo's southern city of Lubumbashi should CAF refuse to move the game. Ivory Coast's government has told football authorities it will not allow Sierra Leone's team into the country for a game, also on Sept. 6. Republic of Congo doesn't want to travel to Nigeria, where Ebola has spread from Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia. Liberia is not involved in the qualifiers.

CAF also received a complaint from Mali, which doesn't want to play a qualifier in Algeria after a Cameroonian player was hit and killed by an object thrown from the crowd in a league game last weekend.

The Associated Press News Service

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The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

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