Why Bafana’s Afcon hopes could rest on the uncertain security situation in Libya

South Africa need to avoid defeat in that game to book a place at the finals in Cameroon – after failing to beat Nigeria in their penultimate Group E qualifier at FNB Stadium on Saturday – and would obviously prefer a neutral venue rather than having to play in Libya.

The question of just when Libya can expect to have the ban lifted then is one that has been repeatedly asked of Fifa but without any definitive reply.

Libyan officials have been suggesting for years now that the lifting of the ban is just months away‚ but the practicalities seem a lot more complex.

It is known that Fifa have made several fact-finding trips to the country in recent years to see whether the ban can be lifted but Libya’s inability to get their own league up and running counts against them.

Libya is effectively a divided country‚ controlled by various tribal factions since the overthrow of late long-time president Muammar Gaddafi in 2011 with the central government having no control over large parts of the land.

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