RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan. 27 (Xinhua) -- FIFA and government officials have cancelled celebrations marking 500 days until next year's World Cup out of respect for victims of Sunday's nightclub tragedy in southern Brazil.
Organizers also postponed plans to unveil the official World Cup poster during an event in capital Brasilia as the country mourns the loss of more than 230 lives after the devastating fire in the city of Santa Maria.
"Due to the tragedy, FIFA, the World Cup organizing committee and the government have jointly agreed to cancel the celebrations planned for Monday. This is not the time for festivities," sport's minister Aldo Rebelo said on Sunday.
FIFA's secretary-general Jerome Valcke also offered his condolences to families and friends of the victims.
"I am a father so I can imagine how the parents must be feeling," Valcke said.
Brazil's Rio Grande do Sul state football federation suspended all first division matches on Sunday and a minute's silence was observed before matches in all other states.