This 12 November video is about a flock of birds, invading a football pitch in Brazil, stopping the match.
The birds were southern lapwings.
This 12 November video is about a flock of birds, invading a football pitch in Brazil, stopping the match.
The birds were southern lapwings.
This video says about itself:
19 May 2012
An activist demanding reform of the absolute Bahrain monarchy is shot directly while he raises his camera to film the brutal police who are cracking down against the popular uprising. The Bahrain monarchy appears to finally realise that its days are over, and has essentially given up most of its sovereignty to become a province of neighbouring Saudi Arabia in a new union between the two states.
Washington, D.C. – Human Rights First today called for the immediate release of Sheikh Ali Salman and Ebrahim Sharif, two of Bahrain’s most prominent peaceful political opposition leaders. Ali Salman, the leader of Bahrain’s main peaceful opposition group Al Wefaq, is appealing a conviction on political charges. Sharif, a leader of the opposition group Waad, is currently on trial in Bahrain for comments made during a speech calling for reform. Their next hearings are both scheduled for Thursday, November 12: here.
From the New York Times in the USA today:
By REBECCA R. RUIZNOV. 12, 2015
ZURICH — Five of the seven men hoping to succeed Sepp Blatter as president of FIFA, the governing body of world soccer, have passed an internal ethics review and have been formally cleared to run in a February election, the group’s electoral committee announced on Thursday. …
The seventh candidate, Michel Platini of France, the head of the European confederation UEFA, submitted paperwork to enter the race on Oct. 8, only hours before he was provisionally suspended by FIFA amid a corruption investigation by the Swiss authorities.
The chairman of the electoral committee, Domenico Scala, has said he will not consider the candidacy of Mr. Platini, who was once regarded as the favorite to replace Mr. Blatter, or perform an ethics review of him until the suspension is lifted. …
But the announcement regarding the remaining five candidates was also not without controversy.
The organization approved Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa, president of the Asian soccer confederation and a member of Bahrain’s royal family. Rights activists have accused him of playing a part in the jailing and torture of soccer players from Bahrain who peacefully demonstrated against his family’s rule during the Arab Spring in 2011. …
Rights advocates have held firm. “If FIFA has any hope to move past corruption and scandal, it must begin by disqualifying Sheikh Salman from the presidential race,” Husain Abdulla, executive director of Americans for Democracy and Human Rights in Bahrain, said in an email. …
The activists specifically charged that Sheikh Salman had led a committee that studied pictures of pro-democracy demonstrations and identified athletes who had participated in them. At least three soccer players, the groups said, were later detained and tortured; upon their release, they were exiled from the Bahrain national team.
“Everything we have presented, from the testimonies of tortured soccer players to the Bahrain Football Association statements, are already on the public record,” Mr. Abdulla wrote in the email. “The crackdown is an incontestable fact.”
THE Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (Bird) slammed Fifa yesterday for adding a “human rights abuser to their profile” after Sheik Salman bin Ibrahim al-Khalifa passed their presidential candidacy integrity check. Khalifa has been accused of being complicit in the detention of footballers and other athletes while head of the Bahrain Football Association: here.
FIFA Ethics Court Bans Former President Sepp Blatter For 8 Years. Michel Platini, who aimed to succeed Blatter as the new president, was also banned: here.
The football World Cup 2010 was in South Africa. South Africa had already been a candidate for the 2006 World Cup. However, they then lost the vote to Germany; because of corruption as looks probable now.
Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:
Police raid at German Football Association because of bribery affair
The German tax authorities this morning raided the headquarters of the German Football Federation (DFB) in Frankfurt. The homes of federation president Wolfgang Niersbach and his predecessor, Theo Zwanziger have been searched.
The raids are connected with the investigation into the payment of 6.7 million euros in 2002 to the world football association FIFA. The magazine Der Spiegel recently revealed that such payment was made to bring in the organization of the World Cup in 2006. …
The public prosecutor suspects the Football Association now of tax evasion. The payment of 6.7 million euros was not declared to the tax authorities. During the raids, eg computers, documents and hard drives were confiscated. If tax evasion is proven, then Niersbach and Zwanziger may face imprisonment.
This video says about itself:
E:60 – Taken / Athletes of Bahrain
8 November 2011
Produced by Yaron Deskalo of ESPN. Filmed and Edited by Evolve Digital Cinema.
What if a country’s biggest athlete, a legend, a hero, a player who brought the nation some of its biggest sporting moments, was at practice one day and was suddenly taken into custody by masked men? What if he was held for months, tortured, his career ended, banned from his team and for playing for his country, all because he expressed his political views? It’s not a storyline from a Hollywood script — that is what allegedly happened in Bahrain.
Specifically, it’s what Alaa Hubail says happened to him. Hubail is the most famous soccer player in Bahrain and says similar treatment was forced on his brother, Mohammad, also a member of Bahrain’s national soccer team; and to Anwar Al-Makki, Bahrain’s internationally ranked table-tennis champion. In a story largely ignored by the Western world, these athletes describe in detail the horrific torture they endured at the hands of their government — a government that is allied with the United States despite allegations of human rights abuses against pro-democracy protestors. E:60 goes to the Middle East for the first time to investigate how athletes were caught up in the clash of democracy, freedom, repression and politics. Jeremy Schaap reports.
From the Human Rights First site in the USA:
October 28, 2015
Bahraini Sheikh and FIFA Presidential Hopeful Continues to Dodge Allegations over Targeting Athletes
By Brian Dooley
FIFA Presidential hopeful Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of the Bahrain ruling family has failed to adequately answer questions about his part in the violent crackdown against pro-democracy protests in 2011. In a BBC interview last night, he dismissed the reports as “nasty lies” that he was involved in identifying footballers and other athletes who were targeted – and some jailed – during 2011.
Associated Press estimated that more than 150 athletes, coaches, and referees were targeted, and some jailed for their perceived part in the protests. There are several major issues he has failed to answer in connection to what happened four years ago:
First, it’s not clear if he is denying involvement in what happened or if he’s disputing that the targeting and jailing of athletes happened at all by the Bahraini government, which is headed by his family. There are numerous press reports that athletes were jailed, and their targeting was reported in the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry, a body set up by the Bahrain government itself to investigate what happened in early 2011. Is Sheikh Al Khalifa denying these things happened, or that he had no part in them?
Second, his response to his role in identifying those to be targeted is rhetorical and inadequate “[did] I need to get involved in this?” There has so far been no satisfying response to The Guardian‘s discovery a few days ago revealing that he was named in an official April 2011 media statement by Bahrain’s state news agency as the lead investigator on an official committee investigating the athletes who had joined the protests. Is Sheikh Al Khalifa denying he was part of this committee?
Third, Sheikh Al Khalifa says he should be judged by those in football who know him. “Ask anyone in football about myself,” he suggests. Will Sheikh Al Khalifa allow foreign journalists into Bahrain to ask footballers and other targeted athletes what they think of him and what role, if any, they believe he played in their identification?
Sheikh Al Khalifa says he offers FIFA “fresh blood.” It’s an unfortunate phrase given the context, and he needs to explain far better than he has what role he played in the targeting of footballers and other athletes in 2011.
If Uefa had any moral backbone it would consider withdrawing from Fifa, by Marina Hyde. The only way these seven Fifa presidential candidates could be considered new brooms is if they were placed next to a recently unearthed fossilised sweeping implement believed to date back to the early Iron Age: here.
The Bahrain Forum for Human Rights (BFHR) stated that the Bahraini child Ali Abdullah Isa (15 years old) was recently arrested in a raid on his father’s house in Zayed city in the early hours of the morning by members of civilian security forces and was taken to the juvenile detention center. BFHR added that he “was harshly beaten and tortured, despite his medical condition as he suffers from sickle cell anemia and was born with a punctured heart,” calling for his immediate release: here.
October 30, 2015, 05:00 pm. US must push for reform in Bahrain. By Brian Dooley: here.
In June Bahrain’s king pardoned opposition politician Ebrahim Sharif only to throw him back in jail three weeks later. His wife, Farida Ghulam, writes about the surreal nature of living with a lack of free expression.
By Brian Dooley, Director, Human Rights First’s Human Rights Defenders Program:
10/27/2015 12:46 pm EDT
Al Khalifa of Bahrain’s ruling family has announced his candidacy for the post this week saying the job required “an experienced, competent and honest leadership capable of winning the confidence of the international football community.”
But then UK newspaper The Guardian uncovered what seems to be a smoking gun document linking him directly to the crackdown, suggesting he was a senior member of a special committee set up to identify athletes who took part in the demonstrations.
AP estimated that more than 150 athletes, coaches, and referees were targeted, and some jailed for their perceived part in the protests.
In May 2011 I was in Bahrain researching the crackdown and found other human rights violations related to football and specifically Manchester United.
I met the family of Ahmad Shams, a 15-year-old boy who was shot by the police, according to his family, while wearing a Man United shirt about six weeks before. He was playing football with his friends near his home in Sar on March 30, 2011, when his family says he was killed by security forces. Around 5:30 p.m. in a quiet area, two groups of security vehicles appeared, nine in all. When the boys playing saw them they ran, and the police started shooting rubber bullets at them.
They say Ahmed was hit by a “sound bomb” cartridge on the back of his head. He continued running, but was caught and beaten by the police. His father took him to a relative’s house and then to the American Mission hospital. While being examined by a doctor, his family says security troops came and took him to the main Salmaniya Hospital, where he died, still wearing a Manchester United shirt.
An international commission of inquiry into what happened during the crackdown on protestors ordered by the Bahraini government found that “No autopsy was conducted and no formal cause of death has been recorded,” and that “The MoI [Ministry of the Interior] has failed to conduct an effective investigation into the circumstances surrounding this death.”
Ahmed’s bedroom wall had posters of Wayne Rooney and others of the 2010-2011 United team. In the weeks after his death, some people in Bahrain wrote to Man United ambitiously asking if they might hold a minute’s silence before one of their games in tribute to Ahmed. People sent emails to the Man United account making the request. One of them was Dr. Fatima Haji, a rheumatologist in Bahrain’s Salmaniya Medical Complex, and a Ryan Giggs fan.
With dozens of other medics, she was arrested after treating injured protestors and tortured in custody. But her interrogation was a bit different; she had written the email asking for the minute’s silence and then deleted it, knowing it might be incriminating. When she was arrested on April 17 her laptop was taken too, and a few days later — with tragic efficiency — Man United responded to her email, which her interrogators then saw.
“I was blindfolded and handcuffed with my hands behind my back, and beaten,” she told me. “A man asked me ‘What is your relationship with Alex Ferguson?’ I was shocked and figured out they’d gone through my emails. A female officer hit me on the head on both sides at the same time — she was wearing what I later found out was a special electrical band on her hands and she electrocuted me a couple of times — I felt a shock wave through my head. It was very painful and the whole world was spinning. I was beaten again on the head.”
Haji says she was questioned over and over again about her connection to Manchester United: “because they’d responded to my email the police thought I somehow knew someone at Manchester United.” She spent several weeks in custody and was tried with 19 other medics in a military court. She was sentenced to five years in prison and finally acquitted on appeal in June 2012. One of her co-accused, Dr. Ali Alekry, is still in prison.
Man United has run football camps in Bahrain since then, and the regime is proud of its links with major international sporting brands — it hosts an annual Formula 1 grand prix. Winning the FIFA presidency would be a major coup for the monarchy.
But opposition to Al Khalifa’s bid is growing. Guardian sportswriter Marina Hyde described Sheikh Al Khalifa as a “monstrous arsehole… whose ascent to football primacy has been a classic riches-to-riches story.” Even FIFA — known for its tolerance of corruption and an embarrassing leadership — must realize having Sheikh Al Khalifa in charge would damage its reputation beyond repair.
Rights Groups Deplore Bahrain Royal’s Entry in Race to Lead FIFA: here.
Bahraini Sheikh Salman’s human rights record scrutinized ahead of FIFA election: here.
Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:
Zwanziger: there was indeed a slush fund in 2006
The crisis in German football over possible bribery for the World Cup 2006 will continue for some time. Theo Zwanziger, who between 2006 and 2012 was the president of the German Football Association, has seriously embarrassed his successor Wolfgang Niersbach this Friday.
“It is clear that there was a slush fund at the World Cup bid,” he told Der Spiegel. “It seems to me not that the current president of the Football Association knows this only since a few weeks ago. If you ask me, Niersbach is lying.”
“No illegal money”
The current union president acknowledged on Thursday that to FIFA indeed 6.7 million euros was paid for the allocation of the 2006 World Cup, so that the German Football Association after allocation of the global finals would get 250 million euros for the organization. “But there was no illegal money paid, there were no votes bought,” he stressed.
Niersbach responded to an article last week in Der Spiegel, which said that Germany’s World Cup nine years ago has been awarded through bribery. According to the weekly, four Asian FIFA members of the then organizing committee for the global finals were paid in exchange for their votes.
The German organizing committee, led by Franz Beckenbauer, is said to have had an amount of 6.7 million euros in dirty money. This amount is said to have come from the former Adidas chief Robert Louis-Dreyfus, who wanted the World Cup to go to Germany because of commercial interests.
According to Der Spiegel, Beckenbauer and Niersbach knew all about this. The Dreyfus money is said to have been recycled back to the now deceased head of Adidas, with collaboration by FIFA. Germany was awarded the 2006 World Cup final, beating its major competitor South Africa with twelve against eleven votes.
This video says about itself:
Zainab Alkhawaja #FreeZainab
5 July 2013
Please help Zainab to win her freedom by tweeting #FreeZainab and sharing this video widely. When Zainab is free she will be tweeting to @angryarabiya.
To know more about Zainab or this video tweet @JamilaHanan.
Bahrain: Ongoing judicial harassment against Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja
October 22, 2015
The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), has received new information and requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Bahrain.
The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources about the ongoing judicial harassment against Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja, human rights defender and blogger known for her participation in peaceful gatherings calling for reforms and the respect of human rights in Bahrain.
According to the information received, on October 21, the Bahrain Court of Appeals reduced the sentence against Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja to one year imprisonment while upholding a fine of 3,000 BHD (approximately 8,000 USD), on charges of “insulting the King”. The latter had been sentenced to three years imprisonment in first instance. As per Bahraini law, if Ms. Al-Khawaja is unable or unwilling to pay the fine, the sentence will turn into an additional year and a half in prison. Ms. Al Khawaja can be arrested at any time.
Besides, the Court adjourned the appeal case concerning the charges of “destroying public property” and “assaulting a police officer” to December 3, 2015. Ms. Al-Kawaja had been sentenced to 16 months imprisonment in first instance (see background information).
The Observatory deplores the ongoing judicial harassment against Ms. Al-Khawaja as it seems to merely aim at sanctioning and hindering her human rights activities. The Observatory calls on the Bahraini authorities to drop all charges against her and reiterates its concern about the pattern of harassment against members of Ms. Al-Khawaja’s family.
The Observatory more generally calls on the Bahraini authorities to put an end to all acts of harassment – including at the judicial level – against all human rights defenders in Bahrain, and to comply with all international human rights standards and international instruments ratified by Bahrain, in particular the United Nations (UN) Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted by the UN General Assembly on December 9, 1998.
Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja is the daughter of Mr. Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, who was sentenced on June 22, 2011 by the National Safety Court – a military court – to life imprisonment for his peaceful human rights activities. On January 7, 2013 Bahrain’s highest court upheld the convictions against 13 leading activists for their role in anti-government demonstrations in 2011, including Mr. Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja. The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed concerns about the lack of fairness and due process afforded to these activists. The court ruling came more than a year after the government’s pledge to implement the recommendations of the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI), which called on authorities to “commute the sentences of all persons charged with offences involving political expression not consisting of advocacy of violence” and to overturn convictions imposed after grossly unfair trials.
Mr. Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja was subjected to a severe level of torture starting from the time of his arrest on April 9, 2011. He is currently being held in Jaw prison. He has repeatedly gone on hunger strikes to protest his imprisonment and conditions of detention.
On December 16, 2011, Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja staged a sit-in to call for reforms and more rights at Abu Saiba roundabout and was joined by several women. The riot police fired tear gas canisters to disperse them. Ms. Al-Khawaja continued her sit-in peacefully and refused to move until she was shot at directly with a tear gas canister. She was then handcuffed, dragged across the pavement by her handcuffs, had her hijab removed and was slapped by a female police officer. She was further cursed and beaten in the police station. She was then released pending investigation.
On February 27, 2013, she was again arrested during a peaceful sit-in to protest authorities’ refusal to hand over the body of a man who was killed during a demonstration on February 14, 2013. She was taken to Al Hoora police station, where she was charged with “obstructing traffic”, “damaging public property”, “prejudice to authority” and “inciting hatred of the regime”.
On February 27, 2013, the Third High Criminal Court upheld a one month imprisonment sentence against her on charges of “participating in an illegal gathering” and “entering a restricted zone”, i.e. the Pearl Roundabout, in relation to a February-2012 protest. The same court also upheld another two-month imprisonment sentence previously rendered by the Lower Criminal Court on charge of “damaging Ministry of Interior property”, after Ms. Al-Khawaja had torn a photograph of the King of Bahrain, although she had already served that sentence after a previous arrest. As a result, the Public Prosecution announced in a statement that Ms. Al-Khawaja was to start serving her sentence on February 28, 2013, for a total of three months and 20 days. In addition, on the same day, the Court of Appeal overturned the acquittal ruled by the Court of First Instance on May 2, 2012 in another case related to charges of “insulting a police officer” in a military hospital, and sentenced Ms. Al-Khawaja to three months imprisonment. Ms. Al-Khawaja was protesting inside the Bahrain Defence Forces hospital when her father, Mr. Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja, was on hunger strike in that hospital.
On May 22, 2013, Ms. Al-Khawaja was again sentenced to three months in jail on charges of “taking part in an illegal gathering” and “insulting a police officer” in reference to the December 2011 protest. At the time, she had been serving the two above-mentioned sentences and was due to be released at the end of May 2013.
On January 27, 2014, the Criminal Court issued a new sentence in absentia against Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja, where she was sentenced to four extra months of imprisonment in two new cases in which she was accused of destroying property of the Ministry of Interior during her detention at Isa Town police station in May 2013, after she ripped up a picture of the King of Bahrain.
On February 16, 2014, Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja was released from prison. At the end of August 2014, she was briefly detained when she went to the hospital to visit her father after he was transferred there from the prison.
On December 4, 2014, Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja was sentenced to a three-year prison term for “insulting the King”, as well as being subject to a fine of 3,000 BHD (approx. 7,285 Euros) for tearing up a photo of the King of Bahrain before the Court in October 2014. The court set bail for 100 BHD (approx. 240 Euros) and she was released pending the outcome of the appeal.
On December 9, 2014, the Court of Appeals sentenced her to 16 months in prison on charges of “destroying government property” and “insulting a police officer” whilst in detention in 2012. Although Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja is not currently detained, the sentence may be executed at any time.
On June 2, 2015, Ms. Zainab Al-Khawaja was sentenced in first instance to nine months’ imprisonment on charges of “entering a restricted area” and “insulting a public servant”. A bail of 300 BHD (approx. 707 EUR) was paid to suspend the implementation.
The Observatory urges the authorities of Bahrain to:
i. Drop all charges against Ms. Zainab Al Khawaja and put an end to any act of harassment, including at the judicial level, against the Al Khawaja family, as well as against all human rights defenders in Bahrain;
ii. Release Mr. Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja immediately and unconditionally as his detention is arbitrary since it seems to merely sanction his human rights activities;
iii. Conform in any circumstances with the provisions of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, in particular:
– its Article 1, which states that “everyone has the right, individually or in association with others, to promote the protection and realization of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels”;
– its Article 6 (c) which states that “everyone has the right, individually and in association with others to study, discuss, form and hold opinions on the observance, both in law and in practice, of all human rights and fundamental freedoms and, through these and other appropriate means, to draw public attention to those matters”;
– and its Article 12.2 which states that “the State shall take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration”.
iv. Ensure in all circumstances respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international human rights standards and international instruments ratified by Bahrain.
· Cheikh Hamad bin Issa AL KHALIFA, King of Bahrain, Fax: +973 176 64 587
· Cheikh Khaled Bin Ahmad AL KHALIFA, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Tel: +973 172 27 555; Fax : +973 172 12 6032
· Cheikh Khalid bin Ali AL KHALIFA, Minister of Justice and Islamic Affairs, Tel: +973 175 31 333; Fax: +973 175 31 284
· Lt. Gen. Cheikh Rashed bin Abdulla AL KHALIFA, Minister of Interior, Tel: +973 17572222 and +973 17390000. Email: email@example.com
· Permanent Mission of Bahrain to the United Nations in Geneva, 1 chemin Jacques-Attenville, 1218 Grand-Saconnex, CP 39, 1292 Chambésy, Switzerland. Fax: + 41 22 758 96 50. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please also write to diplomatic representations of Bahrain in your respective countries.
In U.S.-backed Gulf regimes, you face years in prison — or execution — for insulting the king. Pro-democracy activists in U.S.-allied Gulf monarchies are brutally punished for writing poems or ripping up photos: here.
Bahrain will host the Manama Dialogue, a high-profile security conference, from October 30 to November 1. A senior delegation of U.S. officials from Congress, the State Department, and the Pentagon are expected to present on U.S. security policies. They should use the opportunity to advance a comprehensive strategy to address the grave human rights abuses in Bahrain and the region: here.
This video says about itself:
11 November 2011
ESPN Report on Arrest & Torture of The Athletes Of Bahrain
From Reuters news agency:
Fri Oct 23, 2015 8:56am BST
Next FIFA boss should be outsider with good human rights record – FIFPro
The next FIFA president should be an external candidate with a good record on human rights and governance and provide a strong track record of driving democratic reform, world players’ union FIFPro said on Friday.
Football’s world governing body, engulfed in the worst scandal in its history, is set to elect a new president on Feb. 26 to replace the suspended outgoing head Sepp Blatter, who has been in charge since 1998.
“A clean break from the past is essential for FIFA to climb out of the toxic pit which continues to produce serious accusations of corrupt behaviour on almost a daily basis,” FIFPro said in a statement.
“Clearly, the presumption of innocence is a principle that needs to be upheld while various investigations are ongoing. At the same time, there is no doubt the present mayhem has left FIFA morally bankrupt.”
Asian Football Confederation (AFC) President Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain said this week he had been urged to stand in the election, but FIFPro’s four-point criteria released on Friday was a clear question mark on his suitability.
Salman’s AFC election in 2013 was blighted by accusations from human rights groups that he, as head of the Bahrain Football Association and member of Bahrain’s royal family, had local football players arrested, detained, abused, tortured and publicly humiliated during democracy protests in February 2011. …
Michel Platini, the president of European soccer’s ruling body UEFA, had been favourite to replace Blatter, but his hopes were thrown into doubt after he was placed under an ethics investigation along with the Swiss.
Complete list of FIFA presidential contenders so far: here.
From the BBC:
23 October 2015
Fifa: ‘Deep concern’ over Sheikh Salman presidency bid
The controversy surrounding the possible candidacy of Sheikh Salman for the Fifa presidency has intensified with the International Trade Union Confederation expressing “deep concern” over the Asian football chief.
Salman has been accused by Bahraini human rights groups of complicity in the detention and torture of footballers and other athletes in a crackdown launched by the Arab kingdom’s rulers following pro-democracy protests in 2011.
Campaigners have called for him to be prevented from standing for alleged “crimes against humanity”.
Although Salman, who denies the claim against him, is yet to declare whether he is a candidate, the 49-year-old says he has been urged to stand “by a growing number of senior football administrators, Fifa members and personalities of public life”.
He became favourite after the campaign of front-runner Michel Platini was thrown into chaos when the Uefa president was suspended over a £1.3m payment made to him by suspended Fifa president Sepp Blatter.
However, ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow said: “It’s difficult to know how low Fifa politics can actually go. Football’s governing body refused to investigate the allegations against Sheikh Salman from 2011, and it is inconceivable that someone who is facing such grave allegations of human rights violations could step into the void at the top of Fifa resulting from Swiss and US corruption investigations.”