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India - Pakistan hockey series cancelled

The India – Pakistan hockey series has been called off.

The Indian foreign ministry has cancelled a tour by the Pakistani hockey team, originally scheduled for April 5.

The reasons for the cancellation remain unknown, but could be seen as a retaliatory move by the Indian government after the Pakistan National Assembly passed a resolution condemning the hanging of terrorist Afzal Guru on Thursday.

“The series was cleared by the sports ministry and the home ministry. But yesterday (Thursday) the external affairs ministry informed us that the series has been cancelled,” Hockey India (HI) secretary general Narinder Batra told IANS.

The bilateral series was to be the first between the two teams in 7 years, with the teams having last played each in 2006. After the Mumbai terror attacks of 2008, all sporting ties between the two countries had been cut.

The series was supposed to be a two-leg event, with the first leg, consisting of 5 matches, to be played in India first from April 5-15. The second leg would have seen the Indian team visiting Pakistan for a similar amount of matches, from April 23rd.

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