Speed Reads

taking an L

Moroccan fans stranded after airline scraps World Cup flights to Qatar

Morocco's national airline has canceled seven of the flights intended to transport fans to Doha, Qatar to watch the World Cup semifinal against France on Wednesday afternoon, multiple outlets have reported.

The airline blamed Qatari officials for the cancellations. "Following the latest restrictions imposed by the Qatari authorities, Royal Air Maroc regrets to inform customers of the cancellation of their flights operated by Qatar Airways," the airline said in a statement, per Reuters and The Associated Press. "Royal Air Maroc offers its apologies to customers for this inconvenience beyond its control." RAM did not specify what restrictions had been imposed, but said it would reimburse customers for the cost of their tickets.

The airline announced earlier this week that it would organize 30 extra flights to Doha on Tuesday and Wednesday for fans hoping to attend the historic match. Ultimately, however, only 14 flights were scheduled, seven of which were scrapped on Wednesday. Affected travelers who booked match tickets or secured hotel rooms are now unable to travel, per Reuters and Fox News.

Morocco is the first African and Arab nation to advance to semifinals in World Cup history, per AP. The country's national team will square off against France at 2 p.m. ET.