Libya’s Benina Stadium to Host International Football Tournaments

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The Confederation of African Football (CAF) renewed the adoption of Benina Stadium in Benghazi, to host the four Libyan teams participating in African competitions.

CAF approved 55 stadiums, including Benina, to host the African Champions League and CAF Confederation Cup competitions in the next season.

Notably, the Al-Ittihad and Al-Ahly Tripoli teams will participate in the CAF Champions League, while Al-Akhdar and Al-Nasr in the CAF Confederation Cup.

In May, a CAF Inspection Committee visited Benina Stadium to determine its readiness to host international matches for Libyan clubs and teams.

It granted an exceptional temporary deadline to the Libyan Football Association to carry out some repairs related to its pitch, conference rooms, and changing rooms. Benina remains the only CAF-approved stadium in Libya.

The lifting of the ban on Libya’s stadiums was announced last year. A delegation from the African football authority visited to inspect the stadiums, and gauge the security situation in the country. No stadiums were ready to host international matches, except for the Benina. This was opened in 2009, temporarily, until the maintenance of the Sports City Stadium in Benghazi is completed.

Libya’s national team and its clubs competing in African club competitions have been forced to host their matches in neighbouring countries including Egypt, Mali, and Tunisia since the ban was imposed.

An initial restriction was ordered by FIFA in 2011 during the civil war that led to the ousting of Muammar Gaddafi. It was lifted briefly in 2013, before being reimposed.

Since its disputed elections in 2014, Libya has been split between competing political and military factions in the west and east of the country.