Ukraine war: Kyiv asks FIFA to remove Iran from football world cup for supplying weapons to Russia

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Ahead of the football world cup, the Ukrainian football federation has asked FIFA to remove Iran from the championship for supplying drons and other weapons to Russia.

The New Arab reported that the call was made three weeks before Iran is due to face England in the first Group B game in Qatar. The group also includes the United States and Wales.

Ukrainian federation’s executive committee did not ask for Iran to be replaced at the tournament by the Ukraine team which lost to Wales in a European playoff final in June.

Ukraine taking Iran’s place was the suggestion last week by the country’s top club, Shakhtar Donetsk, in a similar appeal to FIFA.

Russia and Iran have both denied international intelligence assessments that Ukraine has been bombed by Russian forces using Iranian-built “Shahed” drones.

FIFA’s legal statutes also make a commitment to “respecting all internationally recognized human rights” and striving to promote the protection of those rights.

However, FIFA did not invoke its human rights pledge when it suspended Russian teams from international competitions  Instead, FIFA cited risks to the security and integrity of its competitions, and the decision was upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

FIFA has already resisted calls from Iranian fan groups to suspend the national team amid turmoil in the country.

 Iranian football players, including some national team members expected to be selected for the World Cup, have supported the protests on social media and in gestures at games, including wearing black wristbands and with subdued celebrations after scoring goals.

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