Qatari TV boss denies Doha Worlds graft

Wednesday May 22 2019

In this file photo taken on December 8, 2015 Yousef al-Obaidly, president de BeIN Sports France, attends the Uefa Champions League group A match between Paris-Saint-Germain (PSG) and Shakhtar Donetsk at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris. Yousef Al-Obaidly was indicted, end of March in France, in the investigation on suspicions of corruption over the awarding to Doha of the World Athletics championships, judicial sources close to the case said to the AFP on May 21, 2019. PHOTO | FRANCK FIFE |

In this file photo taken on December 8, 2015 Yousef al-Obaidly, president de BeIN Sports France, attends the Uefa Champions League group A match between Paris-Saint-Germain (PSG) and Shakhtar Donetsk at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris. Yousef Al-Obaidly was indicted, end of March in France, in the investigation on suspicions of corruption over the awarding to Doha of the World Athletics championships, judicial sources close to the case said to the AFP on May 21, 2019. PHOTO | FRANCK FIFE |  AFP

AFP
By AFP
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The boss of Qatari television channel BeIn Yousef Al-Obaidly denied on Wednesday that he acted corruptly in the bidding process for this year's World Athletics Championships in Doha.

Investigating magistrates are considering charging Al-Obaidly with active corruption, while ex-athletics boss Lamine Diack will serve as a key witness in the matter and will be charged with passive corruption.

They have been under investigation since March.

"The allegations raised are not only utterly baseless and unsubstantiated, but they have been, quite remarkably, leaked to the media," Al-Obaidly told AFP.

Al-Obaidly, who also sits on the board of French Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain, added that he had voluntarily met investigators as part of their inquiries.

"The allegations are completely and categorically denied and will be vehemently challenged using the full force of the law. It would not be appropriate to say anything further," he said.

The championships take place at the Khalifa International Stadium between September 27 and October 6.

Earlier this week AFP learned that Diack and his son Papa Massata Diack may go on trial in a separate matter, for allegedly obstructing sanctions against Russia for doping in return for payments.

Prosecutors have recommended Diack, who was president of the International Association of Athletics Federations from 1999 to 2015, be tried for corruption and money laundering.

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