Qatar deny bribery charges

Qatari organisers of soccer’s 2022 World Cup have “vehemently” denied accusations their successful bid was corrupt, saying its lawyers were looking into claims made by a British Sunday newspaper.

The Qataris issued the denial after Jim Boyce, a vice-president of soccer's world governing body FIFA, said he would be in favour of re-running the vote for the 2022 host nation, if the allegations in the Sunday Times could be proved.

In a report filling the first 11 pages of the newspaper, the Sunday Times claimed it had obtained millions of documents which they say show former FIFA executive committee member Mohamed Bin Hammam of Qatar made payments totalling around $5 million to football officials in return for votes for Qatar.

Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy -- the nation's World Cup organising committee -- said it had won the right to stage the finals with “the best bid”, and that it was “time for the Middle East to host its first FIFA World Cup”.

The Sunday Times alleged that Bin Hammam, who is also an ex-Asian Football Confederation (AFC) president, used slush funds to pay cash to top football officials to win a “groundswell” of support for Qatar’s World Cup bid.

Football’s world governing body FIFA is investigating the 2010 vote that awarded the 2022 World Cup to Qatar and the 2018 tournament to Russia.

A report by FIFA chief investigator Michael Garcia, a top US lawyer, is to be finalised this year.

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