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Seep Blatter facing suspension by FIFA ethics committee

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The ethics watchdog of scandal-tainted FIFA was locked in talks on Wednesday to decide the fate of world football president Sepp Blatter as attacks on the veteran sports baron mounted.

The ethics committee tribunal was also to decide whether to take action against UEFA leader Michael Platini and former FIFA vice president Chung Mong-Joon, both candidates to take over from Blatter.

As the drama intensified, British media reported that the ethics committee had recommended a provisional suspension of 90 days for Blatter.

But a close associate of the besieged FIFA chief dismissed the claims.

“I was with president Blatter 30 minutes ago and no information of this kind was communicated to us,” the associate told AFP, while a spokesman for the committee tribunal refused to comment.

 Sepp Blatter Fifa President
Sepp Blatter Fifa President

The reports were based on statements by Klaus Stoehlker, described as a close adviser to Blatter.

However, in June, FIFA denied any legitimacy to Stoehlker, claiming that his duties with Blatter had ended on May 31.

Meanwhile, Chung hit out at Blatter, calling him “a hypocrite and a liar” and threatening a legal case for embezzlement of FIFA funds.

The 79-year-old Blatter, who has ruled FIFA for 17 years, insisted in a German magazine interview that he would not be forced out of office before an election to be held in February.

FIFA has kept the activities of its independent ethics committee cloaked in secrecy in recent months as accusations of corruption have mounted.

But a Senegalese member of the committee’s adjudicatory chamber, FIFA’s But a Senegalese member of the committee’s adjudicatory chamber, FIFA’s highest court, said it started a five-day meeting on Monday, with Blatter and the other two officials on the agenda.

Abdoulaeye Makhtar Diop, a former Senegal sports minister, said in a statement: “the members will focus on the topics of the Swiss Sepp Blatter, FIFA president, the Frenchman Michel Platini, president of UEFA, and the South Korean Chung Mong-Joon.”

FIFA officials refused to comment on the disclosure.

– ‘Hypocrite’ accusation –

But the world body, fighting off multiple corruption accusations, has been forced to consider suspending its president since Swiss authorities opened an investigation for “criminal mismanagement” against Blatter.

But the world body, fighting off multiple corruption accusations, has been forced to consider suspending its president since Swiss authorities opened an investigation for “criminal mismanagement” against Blatter.

Platini has also been implicated in the investigation because of a two million dollar (1.78 million euros) payment made to the French football legend in 2011.

FIFA’s secretary general Jerome Valcke was suspended last month following press allegations that linked him to the sale of World Cup tickets at inflated prices.

Blatter won a fifth term of office on May 29, despite a major storm over a US inquiry into the football business. But four days later he announced he would stand down when a new election is held on February 26.

Despite the new allegations, Blatter said he will carry on until the election.

“I will fight until February 26. For me. And for FIFA,” he told Bunte, a German magazine.

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