Today.Az » Sports » 'Euro 2012 can't be moved from Ukraine'
30 April 2012 [17:14] - Today.Az
Euro 2012 matches scheduled in Ukraine cannot be moved at short notice to another country such as Germany, a senior UEFA official has said.
Calls in Germany for a boycott of the tournament had led to suggestions that matches could be transferred elsewhere, but Martin Kallen, tournament director of European football's organizing body, told Monday's Sueddeutsche Zeitung daily that was not an option.
"There would only be one possibility. One would have to think about postponing the tournament to another year," he said, DPA reported.
Ukraine has faced rising international pressure over the jailing of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, which has been criticized as politically motivated.
The explosion of four bombs in the eastern Ukrainian industrial city of Dnipropetrovsk Friday has also led to security fears.
Some German politicians have called for a boycott of matches in Ukraine over the imprisonment of Tymoshenko. According to a report in Der Spiegel magazine, Chancellor Angela Merkel is considering staying away from games in Ukraine and is urging her ministers to do the same unless Tymoshenko is released for medical treatment.
The German national team will be based in Poland for the June 8-July 1 tournament, which is being co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine, but will play their three group games in Ukraine, beginning with a game against Portugal on June 9 in Lviv.
Kallen said UEFA was monitoring developments daily but there was at present no reason for making any changes. If the situation were to become too dangerous the tournament would not be held, he said.
"We are organizing a football festival, and nothing else," he added.