FIFA tells protesters not to target World Cup workers

Cuiaba (Brazil), Oct 9 (IANS) FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke has urged protestors not to direct their discontent at workers involved in the redevelopment of Brazil's World Cup stadiums.

Dozens of demonstrators interrupted Valcke's inspection of the Arena Pantanal in Brazil's west Tuesday, voicing their anger at the country's soaring World Cup costs, reports Xinhua.

"People have freedom and that is part of democracy. But the workers who are here trying to finish the stadium should not be targeted," Valcke said.

Violent protests have been a regular occurrence here since the Confederations Cup in June, when Brazilians went to the streets in a nation-wide march against corruption and misuse of public funds.

Many demonstrators questioned why Brazil was spending billions of dollars on World Cup stadiums instead of improving essential services like health, education and transportation.

Arena Pantanal will host four matches during the June 12 to July 13 tournament.

Officials say the stadium is 85 percent complete despite the fact seats are yet to be installed.

FIFA has set a Dec 20 deadline for the completion of Brazil's 12 World Cup stadiums.

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