FIFA passes Sheikh Salman as election candidate despite Bahrain rights protest; Bility out

FIFA has listed Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim Al Khalifa among five official candidates for the Feb. 26 presidential election, and excluded Musa Bility of Liberia.

FIFA says Sheikh Salman passed an integrity check by its election committee despite protests filed by rights groups in Bahrain. Activists claimed Sheikh Salman took part in a process of abusing rights of athlete protesters during pro-democracy events in 2011.

FIFA says Bility, the Liberia soccer federation president, was excluded "in view of the content of the integrity check report relating to him."

Details were not given.

The five candidates are: Sheikh Salman, Prince Ali bin Al-Hussein of Jordan, Jerome Champagne of France, Gianni Infantino of Switzerland and Tokyo Sexwale of South Africa.

Michel Platini's candidature was not judged pending his FIFA ethics case.