AMMAN: The Jordanian Royal Court has stepped into the increasing-fevered FIFA presidency campaign by denouncing attempts to promote false information about the bid by Prince Ali bin Al Hussein to succeed banned and disgraced Sepp Blatter.
In a statement reported in the Jordanian media, the Royal Court said rumours that Prince Ali’s campaign manager held Israeli nationality were false and are mere attempts to negatively affect the prince’s putsuit of election on Friday next week in Zurich.
“These rumours contravene professional and moral norms and standards as well as the principle of objectivity,” the statement added.
Totally false claims about Prince Ali’s campaign manager were published by an adviser to rival candidate Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa of Bahrain, the Asian confederation president.
Bahrain football media officer Mohammed Al Mudaweb posted a series of tweets claiming PR Office founder Shimon Cohen – who is from Wales – was born in Tel Aviv and played football for Israel in the 1960s.
Al Mudaweb appeared to have confused the Welsh spin guru with another Shimon Cohen, who was born in Tel Aviv and played nine times for Israel from 1962 to 1966, scoring one goal.
Reacting to the posts, Mr Cohen said: “This is a disgraceful racist attack by Salman’s FA, implying that just because I am a Jew, there is an Israeli plot afoot.” He added that “a simple Google search would have shown that I am a Welsh PR guy, and not a retired Israeli footballer”.
The Royal Court urged media outlets to ensure accuracy and transparency as well as to verify any information they obtain, “especially when such information is spread by sources that seek to defame others”.
Another attempt to undermine the election campaign saw the hacking of emails of the international trades union and forging of supposed correspondence with other FIFA reform campaigners.
The other candidates are Gianni Infantino, the UEFA general secretary from Switzerland, former FIFA official Jerome Champagne of France and South African businessman Tokyo Sexwale.