FIFA Suspends Spanish Soccer President Luis Rubiales for 90 Days. FIFA officially announced on Saturday that it had suspended Luis Rubiales, the president of the Spanish soccer federation. This action came as a response to an ongoing investigation by a committee into his conduct during the Women’s World Cup final. One of the incidents being investigated involves an unauthorized kiss on the lips he gave to a player.
Investigating Rubiales’ Conduct at Women’s World Cup Final
Despite significant pressure from various sources, including the Spanish government, players, soccer clubs, and officials, Rubiales chose not to resign. This decision was made during an emergency meeting held on Friday.
FIFA Suspends Spanish Soccer President
In a statement, FIFA reaffirmed its commitment to upholding the dignity of all individuals and strongly condemned any actions that went against this principle. The statement read, “FIFA remains steadfast in its dedication to preserving the integrity of all individuals and vehemently condemns behaviors that contradict this principle.”
FIFA’s Commitment to Integrity and Dignity
In addition, Rubiales has been instructed not to initiate contact with Jennifer Hermoso, the player subjected to the non-consensual kiss. This restriction applies to direct communication or communication through intermediaries. Moreover, he has been relieved of his soccer-related responsibilities for 90 days. This suspension will remain in effect while the disciplinary proceedings, which began on Thursday, are ongoing.
Consequences for Rubiales and Ongoing Disciplinary Proceedings
“FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee will refrain from disclosing further details about these proceedings until a final decision has been reached,” FIFA stated.
Global Outrage and Player Condemnation
The incident sparked widespread outrage and drew condemnation from players appalled by Rubiales’ behavior. U.S. soccer player Alex Morgan expressed her displeasure in a tweet, saying, “The actions of Luis Rubiales are disgraceful. I stand in solidarity with @Jennihermoso and the Spanish players. Winning a World Cup should be a moment of triumph for these athletes, but instead, it has been overshadowed by misconduct, sexism, and shortcomings within the Spanish federation.”
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In a joint statement, the players of the Spanish national team collectively expressed their strong condemnation of actions that undermined the dignity of women.
Jennifer Hermoso responded to claims by the RFEF (Spanish Football Federation) president by stating that she did not consent to the kiss from Luis Manuel Rubiales Bejar during the World Cup Final. The team emphasized that women should not face doubt in such sensitive situations, particularly when undeniable global television footage supports their accounts. Furthermore, the team stressed that involvement in non-consensual actions is unacceptable.
The players also voiced their expectation of a robust response from public authorities to ensure these actions do not go unpunished.
Refuting Claims of Consent and Advocating for Respect
Refuting Rubiales’ assertion that the kiss was consensual, Hermoso clarified that she did not consent and that his claim was unfounded. She explained, “I want to clarify that, as seen in the video footage, I did not consent to his kiss, and I certainly did not intend to lift the president into the air. I will not tolerate my credibility being questioned nor accept the fabrication of statements I never made.”
Hermoso concluded her statement by urging the RFEF to implement necessary protocols and safeguard their players’ rights, emphasizing the importance of representing equality and respect in all aspects.