Nike Inc. violation of Human Rights of Iranian Footbal Players

  • by: Hamed Qadim
  • recipient: President of the Human Rights Council of United Nations

Dear Mr. Vojislav SUC
President of the Human Rights Council of United Nations

The signees of this petition are raising a claim against Nike Inc. for violating human rights of Iranian athletes during FIFA world cup 2018. Nike Inc. has banned Iranian football players to use its shoes and equipment in world cup 2018 in Russia. This is against clear statements of FIFA to refuse politics engagement in sport and also United Nations human rights statement. The followings are references to our claim which is intended to support individuals' human rights to be violated by political disputes of governments. Our claim is also intend to imply the social responsibility of global businesses that must comply with Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations.

1) According to article 4 of Law of the Game -2015/2016 of FIFA, no player has the right to wear/use any basic compulsory equipment with political, religious and personal slogans, images and statements. The reason for this law imposed by FIFA is to prevent use of sport as a political/ideological means. If that has to be obeyed by players, the spirit of the law implies that such obligation should be applicable to all institutions and companies that deliver services or products to FIFA. In that sense, it is not acceptable to expect players follow the rule while Nike Inc. clearly acts in contradiction to the spirit of this law and bans Iranian players with no reason other than political conditions of their government.
2) Article 2 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations declares that "Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty".
Banning Iranian football players (who are not employees of their government) is an explicit failure of Nike Inc. to comply with this article. Football players as individuals have the right to be treated without referring to their nationality and their political or religious views.
3) Article 5 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations declares that "No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." Nike Inco. Announcement at the beginning of the FIFA world cup 2018 has been a cruel behaviour against football players of Iran who are bearing too much stress in global competitions. The approach of Nike Inc. has humiliated the football players of Iran and is not less than mental torturing. This is an explicit inhuman/degrading treatment against innocent individuals done by Nike Inc.
4) Article 17 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations declares that "(1) Everyone has the right to own property alone as well as in association with others. (2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property." Referring to this article, any individual has the right to own a property and decision of Nike Inc. to ban Iranian football players is an explicit violation of human rights which can be repeated if not prevented. This behaviour resembles Anti-Semitism of Nazi ideology which led into catastrophic human rights violations in the history of human beings.
5) Article 30 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations declares that "Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein." Referring to this article no one, including businesses such as Nike Inc. has the right to interpret any part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations to justify their decisions /actions of violation of human rights including rights of Iranian football players.
Therefore referring to the above-mentioned references to FIFA Law of Game and Universal Declaration of Human Rights of United Nations, the subscribers of this petition by signing this online petitions would like to announce their claim against Nike Inc for its inappropriate and irresponsible decision and their violation of human rights of Iranian football players during world cup 2018 in Russia. We expect United Nations council of Human rights and correspondent watchdog organizations to take immediate and appropriate action in support of rights of Iranian football players. We also expect FIFA to take actions in order to 1) force Nike Inc. to compensated the violated rights of Iranian football players and 2) make necessary modifications on procedures to refuse political preferences to impact sport not only from athletes but also from companies and organizations engaged in any way to this medium.
The signees of this petition expect international institutes do not fail in practicing values and rules established to preserve rights of human beings.

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