Competing in the Under-20 World Cup taking place in Argentina, the Iraqi selection has denied “risky accusations” linked to an alleged attack by several of its players on a restaurant employee and acts of vandalism.
The Iraq national under-20 team, involved in the FIFA World Cup in Argentina, denied on Saturday “risky accusations” relating to an alleged sexual assault in the hotel where its players were.
Several Argentinian media published on Friday a bulletin from the police of La Plata (60 km from Buenos Aires) reporting the testimony of an employee of the hotel restaurant, affirming that members of the Iraqi delegation “touched part of her intimate of the body.
According to the same source, the person in charge of the reception of the hotel, heard by an Argentine policeman, for his part, testified that members of the Iraqi team who “roamed in their underwear in the corridors of the hotel, deliberately activated the fire alarm system”.
A security guard at the establishment, still quoted in the report, indicated that members of the delegation “abused a local interpreter”, and “disabled a hotel elevator, using it overloaded”. Charges denied late Saturday evening by the management of the team, in a video posted on the social networks of the Iraqi football federation.
“If such a shameful act had really taken place, a video would have circulated around the world”
“Unfortunately, the accusations are launched in a hazardous way against the selection, concerning a case of sexual harassment”, reacted the administrative director of the Iraqi team under 20, Nadim Karim. “I have been accompanying the delegation for two years, we have participated in training (…) in Antalya or in Spain”, he continued, specifying that “despite the freedoms” offered by these places, “We have never faced such accusations”.
“If such a shameful act had really been carried out”, he pointed out in reference to the accusations of sexual assault, “a video would have circulated all over the world”. “We are in 2023, everywhere in the streets and in the hotels there are surveillance cameras,” he added.
The manager accused “the hotel administration” of being behind these accusations “in reaction to our insistence on changing hotels”, the establishment being according to him “deprived of the most basic necessities”. , having no sports hall and being located far from the training stadiums.
The Under-20 World Cup brings together 24 selections until June 11. Initially planned in Indonesia, it was relocated to Argentina last month by the International Football Federation (Fifa), which decided to withdraw the organization from Indonesia following the refusal of two provincial governors to host the team. ‘Israel.