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Turkey ties moved abroad


UEFA competition matches involving Besiktas JK, Galatasaray SK and Maccabi Haifa FC will be played outside Turkey.

UEFA has switched three European club competition matches due to be played in Turkey over the next two weeks to neutral venues outside of the country.

Security situation
A statement by European football's governing body on Tuesday said that the matches between Galatasaray SK and Juventus FC (UEFA Champions League), Maccabi Haifa FC and Valencia CF (UEFA Cup) and Besiktas JK and Chelsea FC (UEFA Champions League) were being moved in view of the current security situation in Turkey. The decision was taken by the UEFA Emergency Panel at a meeting in Brussels on Tuesday. 

Terrorist attacks
"The decision comes in the wake of the recent terrorist attacks of 15 and 20 November in Istanbul and follows a broad evaluation of the current threat to security, the advice offered by a variety of governments, including the assurances offered by the Turkish government, and the investigations still being undertaken by the relevant authorities," UEFA said.

Overall interests
"Taking everything into account, the Emergency Panel felt that it was in the overall interests of clubs, players, fans and European football in general to move these particular ties at this time. Steps will now be taken to establish the venues and dates for these matches."

Safety and security
UEFA Chief Executive Gerhard Aigner said: "This has not been an easy decision. The Emergency Panel has to evaluate all the available evidence while focusing on the safety and security of the participants and fans in UEFA's competitions. Given the proximity to recent tragic events and the uncertain security situation, the Panel feels it is right to switch these particular ties to neutral venues at this time."