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Mon 17 Jul 2017 10:20 AM

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Article on stripping Qatar of 2022 World Cup fake, website says

Founder of The Local Europe says the article was published on a lookalike site

Article on stripping Qatar of 2022 World Cup fake, website says
FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

A Swiss news site has denied publishing a report that claimed six Arab nations asked FIFA to strip Qatar of the 2022 World Cup.

The article, which included quotes claiming to be from FIFA president Gianni Infantino, said the six Arab countries collectively wrote to football’s international governing body to remove Qatar as hosts under Article 85 of the FIFA Code, which allows it for such action in the case of emergency.

Six Arab nations, including Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt, cut diplomatic ties with Qatar last month over Doha’s alleged support to terror groups and its relationship with Iran.

In a tweet on Sunday, James Savage, founder of The Local Europe, said the article was not published on his website, but on a fake website designed to look like The Local.

“The article furthermore attributed quotes to Gianni Infantino speculating that FIFA might accede to such a request. None of the claims in the article were true, and The Local's staff neither wrote, published nor removed the article in question."

He said there was no trace of the purported article in their systems, nor there was any evidence that anyone tried to access the website’s content management system.

Savage also condemned in the strongest terms any attempt to abuse The Local’s brand to spread disinformation.

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