Germany accused of paying off Saudi Arabia with weapons to host 2006 World Cup

In the deciding vote over who would host the FIFA World Cup in 2006, Germany narrowly beat out much-favored South Africa.

June 7, 2015 06:37
1 minute read.

Soccer [Illustrative]. (photo credit: INIMAGE)


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FIFA is again involved in scandal following allegations that the German government gave weapons to Saudi Arabia in order to win the vote to host the 2006 FIFA World Cup games.

According to a report in German newspaper Die Zeit, the German government, headed by former chancellor Gerhard Shroeder, temporarily removed arms restrictions and transferred weapons to the Saudis, one week before the deciding vote over whether Germany or South Africa would be the 2006 hosts.

In the end, 12 voted in Germany's favor and 11 voted for South Africa. One FIFA delegate from New Zealand, who was planning to vote for South Africa, was mysteriously absent from the vote.

Germany's win at the time came as a shock to the sporting world since South Africa was heavily favored to host the games.

South Africa ended up hosting the World Cup in 2010.

On June 2, Sepp Blatter suddenly resigned as FIFA president in the face of a US-led corruption investigation that has plunged world soccer's governing body into the worst crisis in its history.

Blatter, 79, announced the decision at a news conference in Zurich, six days after the FBI raided a hotel in Zurich and arrested several FIFA officials just four days after he was re-elected to a fifth term as president.

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