Gianni Infantino says the World Cup could act as a ‘positive trigger’ for peace in Ukraine
FIFA president Gianni Infantino has called upon the governments of Russia and Ukraine to announce a ceasefire throughout the World Cup in Qatar, a situation which he says might act as a springboard towards peace.
Speaking at a lunch alongside world leaders at the G20 summit in Bali, Infantino said that the four-week football festival due to kick off on November 20 offers a platform to reduce hostilities between Moscow and Kiev.
Russia, along with Belarus, was sanctioned by various sporting federations following the onset of the military operation, with FIFA among the bodies to have done so.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino addresses G20 event in Bali on Russia’s war on Ukraine:
“My plea to all of you is to think on a temporary ceasefire for 1 month, for the duration of the World Cup..or anything that could lead to the resumption of dialogue as a first step to peace” pic.twitter.com/3vgMlFgxMD
— Rob Harris (@RobHarris) November 15, 2022
“My plea to all of you: to think on a temporary ceasefire for one month for the duration of the World Cup, or at least the implementation of some humanitarian corridors or anything that could lead to the resumption of dialogue as a first step to peace,” Infantino said.
“You’re the world leaders, you have the ability to influence the course of history. Football and the World Cup are offering you and the world a unique platform of unity and peace all over the world.”
Russia, which hosted the tournament in 2018, was effectively suspended from this year’s World Cup after it was announced the scheduled playoff qualification fixtures involving Valeri Karpin’s team would not be fulfilled following the onset of the Ukraine conflict.
Ukraine, meanwhile, lost to Wales in a qualification playoff.
Since then, however, calls for sport and political affairs to be kept separate have intensified, including from the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, who told world leaders at the G20 summit that “competition between athletes from only like-minded states is not a credible symbol of peace.”
Infantino says that the World Cup will be watched by an audience of billions, and with that comes opportunities to find common ground.
“Maybe the current World Cup, starting in five days, can be that positive trigger,” he suggested.
https://ift.tt/lH2Bphi 15, 2022 at 11:19PM
from RT – Daily news