Fifa opened disciplinary proceedings on Thursday against the president of the Spanish Football Association, Luis Rubiales, following the kiss he forced on player Jenni Hermoso during Spain's victory in Sunday's World Cup final.
"These facts could constitute a violation of paragraphs 1 and 2 of article 13 of the Fifa Disciplinary Code", states the world body, which has so far remained silent while criticism and calls for his resignation have multiplied against Rubiales, both in the Spanish political world and more widely in the world of soccer.
Dedicated to "discrimination", the text referred to by Fifa punishes in particular the fact of "undermining the dignity or integrity" of a person "because of his sex" by a suspension "lasting at least ten matches, or any other appropriate disciplinary measure".
Whatever the Zurich-based organization's disciplinary committee decides, it will not rule on Luis Rubiales' continued employment, which will be on the agenda of an extraordinary general meeting of the Spanish FA (RFEF) on Friday.
"Fifa reiterates its absolute commitment to respecting the integrity of all players, and therefore strongly condemns any behavior that runs counter to this value," added Mr. Rubiales.
"Fifa reiterates its absolute commitment to respecting the integrity of all, and therefore strongly condemns any behavior that runs counter to this value," added the statement from the body, which was urged to open an investigation on Wednesday evening by the FIFPro players' union.
In footage shot on the podium at Sydney stadium on Sunday evening, just after Spain's victory over England, Luis Rubiales can be seen taking striker Jennifer Hermoso's head between his two hands, before kissing her on the mouth.