Qatar’s ruling emir on Tuesday lashed out at criticism of his nation over its internet hosting of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, describing it as an “unprecedented marketing campaign” concentrating on the primary Arab nation to carry the event.
Since profitable internet hosting rights for the World Cup over a decade in the past, Qatar has faced scrutiny and criticism for its remedy of migrant employees and the gay community, amongst different points.
The alleged abuses affecting legions of low-paid laborers who energy Qatar’s economic system and who built its gleaming World Cup stadiums have been a lighting rod for protest world wide, particularly in Europe.
Qatar has repeatedly pushed again, insisting the nation has improved protections for migrant employees and claiming the criticism is outdated.
In a televised speech earlier than the emirate’s legislative physique on Tuesday, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani stated Qatar “has been subjected to an unprecedented marketing campaign that no host nation has ever confronted.”
“The marketing campaign tends to proceed and develop to incorporate fabrications and double requirements that have been so ferocious that it has sadly prompted many individuals to query the true causes and motives,” he stated.
Rights teams have credited Qatar with bettering its labor legal guidelines, similar to by adopting a minimal month-to-month wage of round $275 a month in 2020, and for largely dismantling the “kafala” system that had prevented employees from altering jobs or leaving the nation with out the consent of their employers. Nonetheless, activists name for extra to be achieved.
In latest months strain has additionally mounted on Qatar over its criminalization of homosexuality. Qatari regulation requires a jail sentence of 1 to 3 years for adults convicted of consensual homosexual or lesbian intercourse. European soccer federations final month announced their intention for captains to wear an armband with a rainbow coronary heart design as a part of an anti-discrimination marketing campaign throughout worldwide matches.
Qatar has stated all are welcome on the World Cup, together with LGBTQ followers, however that guests ought to respect the nation’s conservative tradition, during which public shows of affection — even amongst heterosexuals — is taboo.
On Tuesday, a veteran U.Ok.-based activist held a one-man protest in entrance of Qatar’s Nationwide Museum. Peter Tatchell, 70, held an indication accusing Qatar of jailing members of the LGBTQ neighborhood.
Organizers claimed he was arrested however later acknowledged that police had solely briefly questioned him on the sidewalk.
Qatar denied he was arrested and stated claims on the contrary are “fully false.”
“A person standing in a visitors roundabout was cordially and professionally requested to maneuver to the sidewalk, no arrests have been made,” the federal government’s communications workplace stated in an announcement.
In his speech, Sheikh Tamim promised the obvious highlight of the world’s greatest sporting occasion would additionally profit Qatar.
“This can be a nice take a look at for a rustic the dimensions of Qatar that impresses the entire world with what it has already achieved and is reaching,” he stated.
The event begins on Nov. 20 and the ultimate is ready for Dec. 18.