FIFA launches complaints mechanism & statement to support human rights defenders & press freedom; UN endorses move

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30 May 2018

UN experts welcome FIFA's commitment to human rights defenders

Author: United Nation Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner (Switzerland)

"UN experts welcome FIFA commitment to stand up for human rights defenders", 30 May 2018

UN human rights experts have welcomed the move by world football’s governing body FIFA to take steps to safeguard human rights defenders and journalists who raise human rights concerns linked to FIFA events. “FIFA’s commitment is a very positive move,” said the UN Working Group on business and human rights and the UN’s special rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders.“This needs now to be followed up by action to prevent or identify and address any such attacks on human rights defenders in the context of forthcoming World Cup tournaments.” The newly issued “FIFA Statement on Human Rights Defenders and Media Representatives”* elaborates on the 2017 FIFA policy on human rights. It indicates that it should be read, interpreted and applied in accordance with FIFA’s responsibilities under the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and consistent with the spirit and intent of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders. Among concrete steps, FIFA will require bidders and hosts of FIFA tournaments to uphold their commitment to respecting and helping to protect the rights of human rights defenders and media representatives.

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29 May 2018

FIFA launches initiatives to support human rights defenders & press freedom

Author: Fédération Internationale de Football Association - FIFA (Switzerland)

"FIFA launches complaints mechanism for human rights defenders and journalists", 29 May 2018

Today, FIFA launched a complaints mechanism for human rights defenders and media representatives who consider their rights to have been violated while performing work related to FIFA’s activities (see here). The mechanism is complemented by a detailed statement, specifying the commitment outlined in paragraph 11 of FIFA’s Human Rights Policy to respect and help protect the rights of human rights defenders and media representatives. Both...are the result of a nearly one-year process and comprise input from a range of stakeholders and expert organisations, including from FIFA’s Human Rights Advisory Board. FIFA Secretary General...said: “...FIFA is committed to doing its part to support human rights defenders and freedom of the press associated with FIFA’s activities... [A]ll those who advocate for human rights to be upheld in relation to FIFA’s activities need to be able to do so freely and without fear of reprisals.” ...FIFA will respond to any complaints submitted through the mechanism in accordance with the commitments outlined in its Human Rights Policy and specified in the new statement on human rights defenders and media representatives. These new developments complement a variety of steps, which FIFA is already taking in support of human rights defenders and journalists...

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