Japan reconsider decision to withdraw from Copa America

The organisation committee of the 2011 Copa America has asked Japan to reconsider its decision to withdraw from the tournament in the wake of the recent tragic events.
UPDATE 12.30 CET: A statement on the Japanese FA's official website reads that the warm words from the organisation have prompted Japan to reconsider their previous decision to withdraw from the 2011 Copa America. A final decision about Japan's participation will be made by 15 April.

The organisation committee of the 2011 Copa America has asked the Japan Football Association to reconsider its decision to withdraw from the tournament, due to take place this June.

Doctor Jose Luis Meiszner, president of the committee, stated in a press conference that he's given Japan until April 15 to make a final decision.

"The president of the Argentina Football Association, Julian Grondona, has met with Junji Ogura, president of the Japan Football Association, to discuss the difficult period Japan are going through," said Meiszner.

"Grondona has told Ogura on behalf of the organisation committee that we'd be honoured to pay the people of Japan a respectful tribute at the Copa America. We fully understand Japan's decision to withdraw, but we've asked them to reconsider because the people of Argentina and America are keen to show Japan the love and support they deserve.

"We're still hopeful that Japan will take part in the 2011 Copa America and have given their FA ten more days to think about it."

Ogura confirmed earlier this week that the Blue Samurai wouldn't participate in the tournament following the recent earthquake in Japan.

"Our priority is to save lives and rebuild our nation," he said.

"We regret we cannot participate at the Copa America."

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