World Players Association Calls for Fifa's Salman Al Khalifa to Step Down if Hakeem Al-Araibis Not Freed

2019-01-28 - 3:48 am

Bahrain Mirror: The head of the World Players Association has said that Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa should be disqualified from his positions as vice-president of Fifa and president of the Asian Football Confederation if Hakeem Al-Araibi is returned to Bahrain, the Guardian reported.

Brendan Schwab, executive director of the World Players Association, which represents about 85,000 athletes worldwide, said sport's relatively recent codification of human rights protections meant Al-Araibi's situation was "simple".

"We've made it clear in our submissions [to Fifa] that there is a proactive duty to act," Schwab told the Guardian. He said Salman had until 8 February - the deadline for Bahrain to file its formal extradition papers to a Thai court - to show he was fit to hold office.

"If not, he should be disqualified and is clearly not qualified to stand for election," Schwab stressed.

The World Players Association has written to Salman, but has received no response. Salman has said nothing publicly about Al-Araibi's case, despite intense lobbying because of the power he holds in football and as a member of the Bahraini royal family.

It is noteworthy that the AFC communications office has repeatedly declined to answer questions or provide a comment from its president, saying only that it is working with Fifa.

At an Asian Cup pre-game news conference with the Socceroos on Friday, AFC officials stepped in to shut down questions from the media about Al-Araibi, SBS reported.

 

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: Bahrain Mirror
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