Doha Asiad: Iraq celebrates win over Oman

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:38 IST

Iraq's 2-0 win over Oman in the Asian Games' soccer tournament in Qatar Sunday was greeted by deafening volleys of celebratory gunfire in Baghdad.

Baghdad:

Iraq's 2-0 win over Oman in the Asian Games' soccer tournament in Qatar Sunday was greeted by deafening volleys of celebratory gunfire in Baghdad, a city engulfed since 2003 in violence that has not spared athletes and sports officials. Iraqis, who traditionally keep firearms at their homes, are passionate about soccer and wins by the national team over the past three years have provided them with much deserved respites from the daily fare of death and destruction, bringing the ethnically and religiously diverse nation together. "I do hope that sport will unify Iraqis in politics as well," said, Karim Jassim, a 35-year-old cloths salesman from Al-Rasheed street in Baghdad's old quarter. Ali Rehema and Khashen Alaa scored either side of the halftime break to keep Iraq's slim quarterfinals hopes alive. The result left both teams on three points in Group E, three behind leader China. The win came on the same day that the body of Hadib Majhoul, the Sunni Arab chairman of one of Iraq's leading soccer clubs, was found in Baghdad, three days after he was kidnapped by gunmen in Baghdad. (AP)

Topics : Football Caroline Wozniacki
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