Australian govt says not planning to boycott World Cup

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A total of 16 E.U. member states, other European countries, the US, and Canada announced on Monday that they would be expelling Russian diplomats over the Sergei Skripal case.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said there were other possible actions, such as Australia boycotting the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.

What's more likely is that the Australian government joins the United Kingdom in a "state boycott" of the event, where no political leaders travel to Russian Federation.

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"So far, Russia's response has been severely lacking".

Earlier on Tuesday, Bishop warned a boycott of the World Cup was an action the government was considering as part of further sanctions against Russian Federation. However, later the same day she addressed the concerns, tweeting that "the government is not considering a boycott of the World Cup". Iceland followed suit in a decision announced Monday.

A report from London newspaper The Sun suggests Australia is one of a number of countries that are likely to join this action.

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Marc DiBenedetto and Marcus Kwesi O'Mard examine this week's biggest worldwide friendlies and discuss what they teach us about the teams' prospects for the World Cup and beyond on this week's episode of the "NESN Soccer Show", which you can listen here.

"Football Federation Australia respects the Australian government's responsibility to make decisions about diplomatic and worldwide relations", an FFA spokesperson said. "Consequently, Icelandic leaders will not attend the FIFA World Cup in Russian Federation this summer", said a statement from the Icelandic Foreign Ministry.

After a marathon process involving matches in 12 nations, the Socceroos finally booked their place at the global showpiece last November with an inter-continental playoff defeat of Honduras.

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