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Anti-match-fixing treaty signed in Switzerland

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Anti-match-fixing treaty signed in Switzerland
Council of Europe chief Thorbjoern Jagland spoke against match-fixing in sport. Photo: Daniel Sannum Lauten/AFP
18:26 CEST+02:00
Sports ministers from across Europe gathered in Switzerland on Thursday to sign a treaty aimed at rooting out the "scourge" of match-fixing and illegal betting in sports.

"This convention is a major step forward for integrity, ethics and transparency in sport," Council of Europe chief Thorbjoern Jagland said in a statement after 15 countries signed the new treat in response to soaring numbers of reports of match-fixing and other illegal activity in sports.
   
The Council of Europe drafted the treaty, called the "Convention on the Manipulation of Sports Competitions", or simply the "Macolin Convention" after the Swiss town - Macolin/Magglingen in the canton of Bern - it was signed in.
   
It aims to help countries "prevent, detect and punish the manipulation of sports competitions" by improving international cooperation and through measures like creating an alert system for suspicious bets and ensuring protection for whistleblowers.
   
"Match-fixing is a cross-border problem and action at European level is essential if we are to combat this scourge," European Commissioner responsible for sport Androulla Vassiliou said ahead of the signing.
   
"We need to ensure that everyone involved in the fight against the fraudsters works together as a team," she added.
   
Switzerland, which was hosting the conference of European sports ministers, stressed that the growing economic weight of sports coupled with galloping technological progress had led to a spectacular rise in both legal and illegal sports betting around the globe.
   
"Manipulation of sporting competitions had become a global threat to the integrity of sports," the Swiss sports ministry said.

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