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New Fifa president Gianni Infantino visits South Sudan

New Fifa president Gianni Infantino visits South Sudan

South Sudan

New FIFA president Gianni Infantino on Wednesday visited South Sudan, the youngest country in the world which has been plunged by a devastating civil war for more than two years.

Mr Infantino arrived in the capital Juba where he inaugurated the premises of the South Sudan Football Association (SSFA).

He is expected to attend the African Cup of Nations 2017 qualifying match between South Sudan and Benin.

“It is a great pleasure for me to be here in Juba,” said Mr Infantino after inaugurating the premises of the SSFA, adding that this was a “first project among many to come for the development of football in South Sudan.”

The new boss of world football also promised “a new era of development of football.”

The FIFA president, who met with the leader of the South Sudan government Salva Kiir, said he is committed to promoting football in the country. “There is a lot of work to do. South Sudan is one of the key elements of my programme to help the development of football,” he said.

During the campaign for the presidency of FIFA, South Sudan had publicly declared to be in favour of Mr Infantino.

South Sudan, independent from Sudan in July 2011 after decades of conflict with Khartoum, has descended into civil war in December 2013 when President Salva Kiir accused his former vice president Riek Machar of plotting a coup. More than 2.3 million people have been driven from their homes and, according to the UN, at least 50,000 people were killed by the war.