FIFA panel leaves Russia anti-gay issue to Blatter

The Associated Press

ZURICH (AP) -- The head of FIFA's discrimination task force says the panel is not contacting 2018 World Cup host Russia about an anti-gay law.

FIFA vice president Jeffrey Webb says its President Sepp Blatter and secretary general Jerome Valcke ''are in discussions with the Russian authorities.''

FIFA joined the IOC in seeking clarification from Russia ahead of the Sochi Olympics and the World Cup about a new law banning promotion of ''nontraditional'' lifestyles to minors.

Webb says FIFA ''does not tolerate or accept any form of discrimination.''

Still, the panel that met on Thursday doesn't plan to send guidelines to Russia and 2022 World Cup host Qatar, where homosexual acts are illegal.

Webb says the task force's work ''has to have the universality of the 209 (nation) membership of FIFA.''

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