After the large-scale arrests of anti-corruption protesters in Moscow involving police violence, German politicians have renewed discussions about a possible boycott of the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia, Deutsche Welle reports.
Since December 2008, when the International Federation of Association Football decided to hold the world championship in Russia, the situation which civil society in Russia finds itself in has deteriorated sharply, said Gernot Erler, commissioner of the German government for cooperation with Russia. He also reiterated that a revision of the decision to hold the world championship in Russia is in the “exclusive competence of the federation”.
Michael Fuchs, deputy chairperson of the CDU party in the Bundestag, noted that in principle, a country where elementary civil rights are not respected should not host any world championships. In the politician’s opinion, the adverse situation regarding human rights and safety will lead to many football fans refraining from traveling to Russia for the 2018 World Cup.
Boycotting international sport competitions must be a “rare, exceptional occurrence”, although Russia has been moving in a dangerous direction for several years already, by violating international law and human rights, which is “absolutely unacceptable”, Michael Fuchs emphasized.