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Russia-2018-World-Cup-trophJust in three years, Russia will host one of the largest sport forum – the World Cup. Although there’s a plenty of time before the tournament, the Russian World Cup scandals appear one by one. Here are some of them. Disclosure of a corruption in FIFA has given a new impetus to scandal over Russian and Qatar right to host the World Cup 2018 and 2022. A year ago, the world media accused members of FIFA in bribery in relation to the choice of Russia and Qatar as hosts for final tournaments of two cycles of the World Cup.
Public pressure made FIFA Special Committee to conduct an internal investigation into the voting process to determine the host country of the World Championships 2018 and 2022. However, Zurich is not in a hurry to make conclusions. At the same time, FIFA press release states that during the investigation Russia provided only a small part of the documents and correspondence. Moscow explains this as a fact that computers that were used at the time of application, have been rented, and then returned to their owners. The owners also announced that all the computers were later destroyed. Therefore, supposedly, it is impossible to establish whether there have been attempts to influence on members of the executive committee of FIFA during the elections. It’s a rotten business. There is a clear desire to hide the truth. However, Russian big cheese used to be in deep doodoo, and tweet about the purity of thoughts and actions. Thus, for example, it was with the annexation of the Crimea, aggression in Donbas, and it is now in the case of the downed Boeing and an “excessive honesty” of Russia on the right to World Cup 2018.
Another scandal is associated with calls in Western countries to deprive Russia of World Cup hosting. A group of influential US senators appealed to FIFA president Joseph Blatter in April this year. They appealed with a strong recommendation to reconsider the decision to grant Russia the right to host the World Cup in 2018 in connection with the international condemnation of Putin’s regime aggression against Ukraine. Germany and the UK have a rising movement for the transfer or boycott of the World Cup 2018 in Russia. Some parliamentarians in Germany and the UK as well high-ranking sports officials made statements, if Putin does not stop his aggression, it is impossible for Russia to host the World Cup. So as the European Parliament also took the initiative to deprive Russia of the right to organize the World Cup. According to the majority of MEPs, FIFA should suspend preparations for the World Cup 2018 in Russia to change the aggressive policy of Putin.
Against a backdrop of ever-escalating surge of indignation of the idea to host World Cup 2018 by the aggressor state seems unnatural, and Russia is already asserted about the austerity in World Cup 2018 preparation. This is all about a 10% reduction in championship budget. “The results” were not long in coming. Controversial law on the possibility of forced involvement of prisoners to the construction of the championship buildings already passed. The quality of future buildings is predictable. But, even without the abovementioned law, desire of greedy officials to steal and save led to a number of serious accidents at the construction. In addition, Russia has a wonderful “experience” of facilities preparation, such as hotels receiving guests and athletes of the Winter Olympics in Sochi. Ugly living conditions, lack of heating, water, domestic appliances were the subject of numerous complaints of foreign athletes, journalists and visitors to the Games. Notable that the complaints were made about construction defects made under conditions without any savings, but rather invests “in a big way.” What can we expect from the facilities constructed in austerity time…?
You can’t fail to notice a problem of racism, xenophobia and human rights violations. Adviser to FIFA against racism Tokyo Saksveyl said at the end of 2014, that black players may boycott the World Cup 2018 in Russia. Scandals with the manifestation of racism and xenophobia in the Russian stadiums and in the Russian cities do not cease. In this regard, FIFA avowed their concern about Russia’s ability to overcome these manifestations till the World Cup 2018. A year ago Russia has disgraced in connection with the “antigey” law scandal on the eve of the Olympic Games resulted in the ignorance of the Olympic Games opening ceremony in Sochi by major world powers leaders. But then, Russia has not yet been so discredited in the eyes of the world. And today there is the Crimea annexation, Donbas war, downed civilian airliner, international economic sanctions.
There are three years ahead. Should we wait for more scandals around the country endowed with the honorary right to host the final stage of FIFA World Cup 2018? There is no doubt they will expose, as the essence of the ruling regime in Russia and its corrupt, thieving and aggressive nature remains unchanged. For the cause of peace, sport and in particularly football, it would be useful to think over a new host country for the World Cup 2018. It could be an alert signal, warning Putin much more powerful than the current sanctions.
Author :
EurActiv Network