The chief of soccer’s world governing body FIFA issued a plea on Tuesday for a ceasefire in the war in Ukraine for the duration of the World Cup, calling for all sides to use the tournament as a “positive trigger” to work towards a resolution.
Speaking during a lunch with leaders of the Group of 20 (G20) major economies on the Indonesian island of Bali, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said the month-long World Cup, which starts in Qatar on Sunday, offered a unique platform for peace.
“My plea to all of you, to think on a temporary ceasefire for one month for the duration of the World Cup, or at least the implementation of some humanitarian corridors or anything that could lead to the resumption of dialogue as a first step to peace,” Infantino said.
“You’re the world leaders, you have the ability to influence the course of history. Football and the World Cup are offering you and the world a unique platform of unity and peace all over the world.”
The World Cup takes place from Nov 20 to Dec. 18 in Qatar, which is the first Middle East country to host soccer’s showpiece event.