FIFA heads talk Russia 2018 preparation & maximizing positive World Cup impact

6 Mar, 2018 13:43
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© Nina Zotina / Sputnik

With 100 days to go until the 2018 FIFA World Cup, preparations for the football showpiece are in full swing to make sure the tournament is carried out with the highest level of fan safety.

The FIFA Team Workshop recently took place in host city Sochi, where some of FIFA’s top officials, including Head of Sustainability and Diversity Federico Addiechi and FIFA Security Director Helmut Spahn talked exclusively to RT about special measures being implemented.

“FIFA has set up a very comprehensive sustainability strategy for the 2018 FIFA World Cup which encompasses of course all three aspects of sustainability: the social, the environmental and the economic ones,” Addiechi said.

Ahead of the 2018 World Cup, FIFA has adopted its sustainability strategy which includes a broad range of activities with impact on society and the environment.

“In a nutshell, we want to maximize the positive impact that the World Cup has on society, the environment and economy and minimize the risks associated with the event in all those three aspects.”

Addiechi also emphasized that Russia has taken huge steps to prevent possible incidents of discrimination at the World Cup.

“Discrimination is a topic that was very much discussed around this event [World Cup] It helped us in the relationship with the Russian Football Union [RFU] to create a public debate about the topic which led to some positive improvements including the appointment of Alexei Smertin as a discrimination officer of the RFU and the establishment of a certain mechanism to monitor possible cases of discrimination in the game,” he said.

Helmut Spahn, who oversees security measures in FIFA, said that Russian authorities together with the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) have made all necessary arrangements to stage a well-organized and secure tournament.

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“We had an opportunity to test all those security arrangements and concepts during the Confederations Cup last year and everything went very well from our point of view,” he said. “I’m pretty sure that Russian authorities have implemented a concept to prevent any kind of hooliganism.”

“The most important thing is to have a proper risk assessment on a daily basis and then the challenges can be solved if we are working on a professional level together with all the stakeholders,” he added.