Global Pressure Mounts to Revoke Russia’s Hosting of FIFA’s 2018 World Cup

  Global Pressure Mounts to Revoke Russia’s Hosting of FIFA’s 2018 World Cup

 “Boycott Putin Now” campaign gains momentum and expands to target Visa, Kia
                                   and Sony

Business Wire

OTTAWA, Ontario -- June 5, 2014

A global campaign calling for consumers to boycott sponsors of FIFA’s World
Cup has now expanded to include Visa (NYSE:V), Kia Motors (OTN: KIMTF) and
Sony (NYSE:SNE). United with Ukraine, the organization spearheading the
campaign, was formed to mobilize global grassroots opposition to Vladimir
Putin and Russia’s illegal annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula and its
orchestrating of violent terrorist activities across Eastern and Southern
Ukraine. The 2018 World Cup was awarded to Russia by FIFA (Fédération
Internationale de Football Association), the international governing body of
the sport of football.

“We have Presidents and Prime Ministers of Western nations looking for
additional economic sanctions to further punish and isolate Russia. And, we
have this opportunity standing right in front of us to have FIFA strip Russia
of its 2018 World Cup hosting rights which is estimated to be worth $20
billion to that country. I can think of more than 100 countries that would be
far more deserving of that $20 billion than Russia,” said Eugene Melnyk,
Chairman of the Campaign Advisory Committee for United with Ukraine. “Russia
has illegally invaded a sovereign nation, broken international laws and is
orchestrating daily terrorist activities within Ukraine. I do not believe
Anheuser Busch InBev, Visa, Kia and Sony are companies that want to align or
associate their brands with Vladimir Putin and Russia. These global companies
and their once loyal customers have an important principled choice to make.”

The international campaign launched last month, initially targeting Anheuser
Busch InBev. The campaign has a comprehensive website
which includes informative online videos to help highlight the hypocrisy of
FIFA and its major corporate sponsors. The videos are available on the website
in 12 different languages to help facilitate global awareness and to promote
the hashtag #boycottputinnow through social media.

Since its launch last month, the “Boycott Putin Now” campaign has received
widespread media coverage in Canada, Europe and the United States. A sampling
of the media coverage can be found on the campaign’s website.

FIFA’s voting for the 2018 (Russia) and 2022 (Qatar) World Cup hosting rights
took place under the same process and only involved FIFA’s 24 member Executive
Committee. United with Ukraine firmly believes this voting process was tainted
with corruption. United with Ukraine is calling upon FIFA’s sponsors as well
as governments of all 209 FIFA member nations to revoke these hosting rights
and initiate a new, transparent selection process that includes human rights
considerations as part of its voting protocol.

About United with Ukraine

United with Ukraine is an international human rights organization based in
Ottawa, Canada focused on ending the ongoing Russian military aggression
against Ukraine and its illegal occupation of Crimea. The organization is
taking a number of steps to support the Ukrainian people as they work to
restore political and economic stability. Until Russia clearly demonstrates
its respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, United with
Ukraine will continue to apply pressure that will further isolate Russia
economically, culturally and politically.

Anheuser Busch InBev (Euronext: ABI) (NYSE: BUD)

Kia Motors (OTN: KIMTF) #boycottputinnow/kia

Sony (NYSE: SNY) #boycottputinnow/sony

Visa (NYSE: V) #boycottputinnow/visa


United with Ukraine
Paul Morozenko
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