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UEFA bars Israeli clubs from hosting European matches due to security crisis

Smoke rises following what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike which took place before a five-hour humanitarian truce in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip

IBRAHEEM ABU MUSTAFA/REUTERS

UEFA is barring Israeli teams from playing European matches at home while the fighting between Israel and Hamas continues.

The decision by UEFA's emergency panel will affect Israeli teams playing in the Champions League and Europa League.

Citing the "current security situation," UEFA says Israeli clubs must propose alternative venues in another country for home legs "until further notice."

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Maccabi Tel Aviv had been due to host a qualifying game in the Champions League and Hapoel Tel Aviv and Hapoel Be'er Sheva in the Europa League this month.

UEFA has also decided to keep Ukrainian and Russian clubs from playing each other "until further notice" because of the continuing unrest between the neighbouring countries.

European football's governing body made the ruling "in light of the current political situation" after the Russian and Ukrainian associations "expressed concerns about safety and security."

The ruling means Russian side Zenit Saint Petersburg and Ukrainian club Dnipro cannot be paired against each other in the Champions League third qualifying round draw on July 18.

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