ZURICH - FIFA's executive committee
begins a two-day meeting on Thursday with the task of reducing
the confusion surrounding a World Cup bidding process being
played out against the backdrop of a corruption scandal.
FIFA's executive committee is due to choose the hosts for
the 2018 and 2022 World Cups in Zurich on December 2 but, with
barely more than one month to go, the voting process has not
been announced and it is not clear how many voters there will
The bidders - Russia, England, Spain/Portugal and
Belgium/Netherlands for 2018 and Japan, South Korea, Australia,
United States and Qatar for 2022 - say they are carrying on
regardless of the troubles.
"Actually, it hasn't had any effect," Alexei Sorokin, the
Russian bid's chief executive officer, told the International
Football Arena conference in Zurich.
"We're doing as we did before. Today, we don't know the
number of executive committee members who will vote. Other than
that, we don't see any impact. We are still concentrating on
presenting our case."
Last week, FIFA provisionally suspended two members of the
executive committee - Amos Adamu of Nigeria and Reynald
Temarii of Tahiti - over allegations they offered to sell
their votes to undercover newspaper reporters from the Sunday
FIFA's ethics committee is due to make a definitive
decision on the pair by mid November. It could extend the
suspensions, meaning that there will be only 22 or 23 voters at
the Dec. 2 election.
FIFA are also investigating claims of collusion and
vote-swapping between unnamed bidders for the 2018 and 2022
bids, which is banned by the rules. The ultimate penalty for
this is disqualification.
This week, the Swiss parliament's legal committee said it
was considering an amendment to the country's anti-corruption
laws, which do not currently cover officials from the
international sports organisations based in the country.
FIFA are due to hold a media conference after the meeting
on Friday to announce the committee's decisions.
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