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MOSCOW, March 23. /TASS/. The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has no intentions of holding matches of the 2016 Euro Cup this summer in France in front of the empty stadiums, the press service of the European governing body of football told TASS on Wednesday.
Following a series of deadly terrorist attacks in the Belgian capital of Brussels on Tuesday, UEFA Vice President Giancarlo Abete announced it was possible that matches of the 2016 Euro Cup could be played behind closed doors due to a potential terrorism threat.
"There are no plans to have matches played behind closed doors," UEFA’s press service said in its statement addressed to TASS.
Two blasts rocked Brussels airport on Tuesday morning. A third explosion occurred in the Brussels metro close to the EU institutions in the Belgian capital. According to most recent reports, over 30 people were killed and up to 270 wounded.
The 2016 UEFA Euro Cup will be held in France between June 10 and July 10 with matches to be played in 10 different locations, namely in Bordeaux, Lens, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nice, Paris, Saint-Denis, Saint-Etienne and Toulouse.
A total of 24 European national teams qualified for the Euro Cup final tournament in 2016, after the contestants’ format, which was used since 1996, was decided to be extended from 16 to 24 teams.
Following a series of blasts in Brussels on Tuesday, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve announced that all security measures were at the highest level in France ahead of the 2016 Euro Cup.
France had been in a state of emergency since a chain of deadly terrorist attacks carried out in the country last year.
A series of terrorist attacks prepared by radical Islamists was carried out in the French capital on January 7-9, 2015. On January 7, the radicals attacked the editorial board of Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine, shooting 12 and wounding another 11 people.
The attack was carried out by Islamists Sherif and Said Kuashi. The terrorist grouping Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula claimed responsibility for the attack. The following day, their accomplice Amedi Kulibali shot down a female police officer and wounded her colleague in the Paris suburb of Montrouge and on January 9 the same young man attacked a kosher supermarket on the outskirts of the French capital, killing four people and taking hostage all the survivors.
On November 13 last year, a terrorist group also representing radical Islamists staged an even more bloody series of terrorist attacks in Paris and the suburb of Saint-Denis, killing 130 and wounding several hundred other people.