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Abkhazia To Face Panjab In 'Alternative World Cup' Final

Abkhaz soldiers in Sukhumi before a ConIFA World Football Cup game

A soccer team from the breakaway Georgian region of Abkhazia has advanced to the final of a soccer competition for unrecognized territories and states.

The Abkhaz team advanced to the final after a 2-0 win over Northern Cyprus in Sukhumi, the main city of Abkhazia, on June 4.

In the June 5 final, Abkhazia will face Panjab, a British-based team that represents the Punjabi diaspora of northern India and eastern Pakistan.

Panjab made it into the final with a 1-0 win over Padania, which represents eight regions in northern Italy.

There were 12 teams competing in the tournamaent, officially held by the Confederation of Independent Football Associations and hosted by Abkhaz officials.

A team called Western Armenia finished sixth in the tournament, while Iraqi Kurdistan finished eighth.

The team representing the Chagos Islands -- whose inhabitants were forcibly evicted from the islands by Britain in the late 1960s and early 1970s in order to build the U.S. military base Diego Garcia -- finished last.

Based on reporting by Rudaw and information from ConIFA

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