Unsporting behaviour.

AS the kick-off to the World Cup in Qatar nears, there has been a relentless campaign, originating mostly from Europe, criticising the host nation, with some questioning why the cup was even awarded to the petrodollar-fuelled sheikhdom. The criticism has focused on Qatar's alleged human rights excesses, including its treatment of migrant workers and LGBT people. The German interior minister had said that it would have been better if the football gala had not been awarded to 'such states', though she later backtracked after Doha protested, saying that Qatar had 'very good laws' regarding human rights. Moreover, some French cities have refused to screen matches publicly, while a French publication has released a cartoon portraying the Qatari football team as terrorists and suicide bombers. Perhaps more than any real concern for human rights, much of this criticism may be due to European discomfiture with an Arab Muslim state successfully hosting world football's premier event for the first time. The Qatari emir has responded to the campaign by terming it 'slander and double standards', while FIFA has called upon participating...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT