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Copa America: Brazil's Supreme Court announces tournament can go ahead
The Copa America can go ahead in Brazil as planned, the country’s Supreme Court announced on Friday.
The Copa America can go ahead in Brazil as planned, the country's Supreme Court announced on Friday.
The South American football championship is scheduled to begin on Sunday (June 13), with hosts Brazil taking on Venezuela at the Estádio Nacional de Brasília stadium.
An emergency session was held on Thursday to take into account requests to suspend the competition because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It was argued that the hosting of Copa America 2021 would endanger the lives of thousands of people.
Earlier this week, Brazil national team's players slammed their country's decision to host the tournament.
The judges during the session stated that the Brazilian constitution did not give them the power to stop it before adding that the state governors and city mayors should do more to ensure "appropriate health protocols" are respected, BBC Sport reported.
In the session, the judges also expressed their distress at Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro's last-minute decision to host the Copa America, which will be played behind closed doors. The tournament was postponed from 2020 because of the pandemic and was originally going to be co-hosted by Argentina and Colombia.
But Colombia was removed as co-host on May 20 because of domestic civil unrest, and 10 days later, Argentina was rejected as a host after organisers raised concerns over coronavirus cases and the "present circumstances".
So far, Brazil has recorded more than 475,000 deaths because of coronavirus, the second highest number in the world after the US.