World Cup 2022: Fifa tells all competing nations to ‘focus on football’ in Qatar

Norway wears jersey to protest Qatar World Cup
Norwegian players, including Erling Haaland (far left), wore shirts that read “Human Rights on and off the pitch” in protest at the Qatar World Cup last year. Norway did not qualify for the competition.

FIFA has written to all 32 teams at the World Cup, telling them to “focus on football now” after the controversial build-up.

Host Qatar has been criticized for its stance on same-sex relationships, its human rights record and its treatment of migrant workers.

The competition starts on November 20.

The letter calls for football not to be “dragged into” an ideological or political “fight”, let alone a “moral lesson”.

Some players plan a peaceful protest.

England’s Harry Kane and nine other European captains will wear ‘One Love’ armband.

Denmark will wear “Low-key” shirt In protest against Qatar, kit supplier Hummel said it “doesn’t want to be present at a game”, which it claimed “has claimed thousands of lives”.

Australia has posted a video Urge Qatar to repeal its laws on same-sex relationships.

Paris and other French cities have refused to screen the game in public, despite France being the reigning champions.

The letter, signed by FIFA president Gianni Infantino and secretary general Fatma Samura and seen by the BBC, reads: “We know football does not live in a vacuum, we are equally aware There are many challenges and difficulties of a political nature around the world.

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“But please don’t let football be dragged into all the ideological or political struggles that exist.

It added: “At FIFA, we strive to respect all views and beliefs, rather than to teach moral lessons to the rest of the world. No one nation, culture or country is ‘better’ than any other. This principle is the cornerstone of mutual Respect and non-discrimination.

“It’s also one of the core values ​​of football. So, please keep that in mind and let football take centre stage.

“We have the unique opportunity and opportunity to welcome and embrace everyone regardless of origin, background, religion, gender, sexual orientation or nationality.”

We do our best to help – Henderson

This week, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said it was “unfair” to expect players to make political statements or protest during matches.

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England midfielder Jordan Henderson told BBC Radio 5 Live Breakfast: “If there is a World Cup there and everything that comes with it, the players will be wearing a lot of clothes, but the players won’t be able to decide where the World Cup will be held. .

“FIFA has decided that and it’s a question for them to answer. For us as players, we just play football and try to make our voices heard in certain ways to help as much as possible.”

He added: “We do little things like this to show people that we are one and we are all inclusive and that’s why this campaign [Kane’s armband] was exposed.

“If you do the right thing, that’s the most important thing. It’s never enough, no matter what people say, unless everyone doesn’t show up.”

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England’s Beth Mead said on Thursday The “disappointing” game is being played in Qatar. Mead, who is openly gay, doesn’t think the Gulf state is the “right place” to host the race.

Controversial Rally

Other off-field issues include Russia being banned by FIFA following its invasion of Ukraine.besides Ukrainian Football Federation calls for ban on Iran World Cup winner for “systematic violations of human rights”. It argued that the crackdown on protests in the country “may violate FIFA’s principles and norms”.

The World Cup has been moved to winter for the first time in its 92-year history. Qatar had initially proposed hosting the finals in closed, air-conditioned stadiums during the summer, but the plan was rejected.

Qatar World Cup organizers say “everyone is welcome” to come to Qatar to watch football matches and will not discriminate against anyone.

short grey lines

More about the 2022 Qatar World Cup

short grey lines

Seven new stadiums were built for the event, as well as an airport, roads and about 100 hotels. The Qatari government says it has hired 30,000 foreign workers, mostly from Bangladesh, India, Nepal and the Philippines, to build the stadium.

Human rights groups have complained about the treatment of foreign workers in Qatar, and the number of deaths there.

In February 2021, the Guardian reported that 6,500 migrant workers from India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have lost their lives in Qatar since Qatar won its World Cup bid in 2010.

The figure is based on data provided by the various embassies in Qatar.

However, the Qatari government said the total was misleading because not all recorded deaths were of people working on World Cup-related projects.

The government said its accident records showed that between 2014 and 2020, only three of the 37 workers killed at the World Cup stadium construction site were “work-related”.

Evidence gathered by BBC Arabic suggests that the Qatari government underestimated the death toll of foreign workers.

The FA has backed calls for compensation from the World Cup for “any injury or death related to any construction project”.

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