Advisory Council rejects labour reform as Qatar stiffens its back

By James M. Dorsey Revived controversy over the integrity of Qatar’s successful bid to host the 2022 World Cup and persistent criticism of the conditions of migrant labour in the Gulf state appear to have stiffened Qatar’s back as it responds to attacks on multiple fronts, including judicial inquiries in Switzerland and the United States, … [Read more…]

The Middle East and North Africa: Adapting to a New Paradigm

By James M. Dorsey The military strategies of the United States and its regional allies focused on bombing campaigns, support for local militias, and inherently weak military forces to fight potential ground battles, have failed to defeat rebel forces in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and Libya. Calls for the introduction of ground forces against Islamic State … [Read more…]

ILO condemnation of Qatar likely to have ripple effects

By James M. Dorsey The International Labour Organization (ILO) has dealt a blow to Qatari assertions that the Gulf state complies with global standards for workers in a report that condemned the government for allowing state-owned Qatar Airways in the words of the International Transport Workers‘ Federation (ITF) to “violate international and national agreements and … [Read more…]

Departure of AFC general secretary: Business as usual in a swamp of corruption allegations

By James M. Dorsey Transparency appears nowhere on the radar of Asian soccer governors as global soccer reels from the worst crisis in the sport’s history. That was evident in a terse statement issued by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announcing the resignation of its suspended general secretary, Dato Alex Soosay. The statement made no … [Read more…]

Reforming soccer governance: Tackling political corruption alongside financial wrongdoing

By James M. Dorsey The mushrooming governance scandal in world soccer body FIFA increasingly spotlights political in addition to financial corruption in global soccer. Revelations about government and corporate deals made to secure Germany’s hosting of the 2006 World Cup alongside the prominence of political figures in sports governance, frequently aligned with autocratic regimes, emphasizes … [Read more…]

Blatter enables AFC to keep its skeletons under lock and key

By James M. Dorsey Embattled FIFA president Sepp Blatter has spun the world soccer body’s crisis as a public relations and reputation management issue and a problem caused by individuals rather than a crisis resulting from financial and political corruption embedded in FIFA’s culture. In doing so, he has given a blank check to interested … [Read more…]