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Cumbersome Bureaucracy 1 Soccer 0


There might be a lot of disappointed Wales fans, who were going to see their country's soccer team face off against Azerbaijan next month.

It seems that soccer players aren't exempt from foot-dragging bureaucracies.

Some of the Wales players are having trouble getting visas to travel to Baku, and the team's manager has said if one player isn't allowed in, the whole squad will boycott the match.

From Wales Online:

The problem stems from a tightening in Azerbaijani government policy, introduced last month, which says entry visa applicants have to be invited personally by the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Azeri FA [Football Association] have attempted to invite the Welsh players and officials through their government, but as yet, many of the required documents have not been received by the FAW.

The fans are also having problems getting visas, not good for the 26 who are planning to drive to Baku.

-- Luke Allnutt

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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at transmission+rferl.org

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