Football: Fifa lifts Indonesia ban, keeps Kuwait suspension

Fifa president Gianni Infantino (centre) speaks during the 66th Fifa Congress in Mexico City on May 13, 2016.
Fifa president Gianni Infantino (centre) speaks during the 66th Fifa Congress in Mexico City on May 13, 2016. PHOTO: REUTERS

MEXICO CITY (AFP) - Fifa on Friday lifted Indonesia's year-long ban from international competitions but confirmed the suspensions of Kuwait and Benin over government interference in the sport.

Fifa president Gianni Infantino said at a congress in Mexico City that Indonesia was reinstated after the government sent a letter notifying that it had lifted sanctions on its national football body.

Indonesia's sports ministry had frozen the national football association and the South-east Asian nation's football competition following a row over which teams could play in the top league.

But the Fifa congress voted to confirm the suspensions of Kuwait and Benin.

"We must protect our associations from government interference," Infantino said.

Fifa suspended the Kuwait Football Association last October after finding the government had interfered in the group's affairs, leading to three World Cup qualifying match forfeits.

The International Olympic Committee also banned the country for the same reasons.

Representatives of Kuwaiti clubs who travelled to Mexico City had called for the ban to be lifted, but their plea failed.