ICC delegation to leave Pakistan after emergency

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KARACHI, Pakistan, Nov 4 (Reuters) An International Cricket Council delegation, in Pakistan to look at the organisation of next year's Champions Trophy, has cut short its tour because of the imposition of a state of emergency.

Delegation member Samiul Hasan told Reuters today the tour was being curtailed because of the political situation in Pakistan.

''We will return and complete the assessment tour later on,'' Hasan said.

The delegation visited Lahore and Sheikhupura and was due to go to Rawalpindi and Karachi, all venues which will host the Champions Trophy practice and main matches.

President Pervez Musharraf imposed a state of emergency in the country yesterday suspending the constitution and restricting media activity.

In recent years Pakistan has faced objections from visiting teams to playing at some venues because of security concerns.

South Africa refused to play a one-day international in Karachi after a suicide bomber's explosion ripped through a rally of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto, killing some 139 people on October 18.

REUTERS AB RAI2005

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