Tue, 19 Jan 2021

The former head of Afghanistan's soccer federation on July 14 lost his appeal against a life ban for sexually abusing players from the women's national team.

In June 2019, soccer's global governing body, FIFA, banned the Afghanistan Football Federation's former president, Keramuddin Karim, for life and fined him about $1 million -- the most severe sanction possible available under the FIFA Code of Ethics.

In its judgement upholding FIFA's verdict, the Court of Arbitration for Sport's panel said that Karim 'violated basic human rights and damaged the mental and physical dignity and integrity of young female players.'

'With his appalling acts, he had destroyed not only their careers, but severely damaged their lives,' it added.

FIFA welcomed the Lausanne-based court's decision, saying in a statement that it confirms the importance of its 'zero tolerance policy against physical, mental and sexual abuses at all levels of football.'

The organization also praised 'the bravery of those victims who, under dreadful personal circumstances in their home country, have come forward and allowed for justice to be served.'

The investigation by FIFA found that Karim had 'abused his position and sexually abused various female players.'

At least five Afghan players had accused him of repeated sexual abuse in 2013-2018.

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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