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Tapping the potential of human rights provisions in mega-sporting events’ bidding and hosting agreements

15th August 2019

Author - Daniela Heerdt

Tapping the potential of human rights provisions in mega-sporting events’ bidding and hosting agreements

Abstract

This article explores the implications of unprecedented commitments by leading international sports organizations to include human rights principles into their bidding requirements and hosting agreements. In May 2017, UEFA communicated their updated requirements for the 2024 tournament, which now explicitly refer to human rights protection. Four months later, the 2024 and 2028 Summer Olympic Games have been awarded to Paris and Los Angeles, for which the IOC drafted host city contracts that for the first time in the history of Olympic Games include human rights clauses. In November 2017, FIFA announced the adoption of new bidding requirements for the 2026 tournament, which expressly mention the protection of human rights. The aim of this article is to examine if and how such provisions and requirements could improve access to remedy for victims of human rights violations that occurred in the course of delivering mega-sporting events. In pursuing this aim, this article sheds light on the scope and enforceability of these measures and looks into the extent to which the Court of Arbitration for Sport is equipped to deal with human rights matters.