TEHRAN (Tasnim) - China has relinquished its rights to host the 2023 Asian Cup finals due to the COVID-19 situation in the country, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announced on Saturday.
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The event, which is played every four years and features 24 national teams from across the continent, was due to be held in 10 cities from June 16 to July 16 next year.
"Following extensive discussions with the Chinese Football Association (CFA), the Asian Football Confederation has been officially informed by the CFA that it would not be able to host the AFC Asian Cup 2023," the confederation said in a statement.
"The AFC acknowledges the exceptional circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to the relinquishment by China PR of its hosting rights."
The AFC said a decision about the hosting of the tournament would be revealed in due course.
The Asian Cup is the latest international sporting event to be affected by China's attempts to tackle the pandemic.
Earlier this month, Asian Games organizers the Olympic Council of Asia postponed the next edition of the multi-sport event, due to be held in the Chinese city of Hangzhou in September, until 2023.