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FIFA to urge Qatar to relax anti-gay legislation ahead of 2022 World Cup

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  1. Cup should never have been awarded to Qatar – Time has come to penalise countries by excluding them from such events if they should engage in any degree of discriminatory behaviour – whether it be against LGBT people, women, or any other class.

    Let them be ghettoised and let the disapproval be openly shown. I am tired of the accommodation of bigotry.

    1. im not sure if i agree. awarding the world cup to a country like qatar puts that country under close international scrutiny. i mean how many straights would realise that qatar criminalise homosexuality if it wasnt for world cup

      1. Plenty would realise with a simple google search. The real question is how many care

        As Seb Blatter made very clear – not many

        1. plenty wouldnt google gay rights for a start but more importantly the attention that comes with high profile events such as world cup is more likely to expose abuse of human rights by a host state and force international community to respond

          1. keith francis farrell 10 Sep 2013, 12:37am

            Yes Kane, you are right, now we need to make sure that equality becomes the accepted measure for being able to hold international events of this nature. It should be part of the agreement to host these games etc

      2. I’m sorry, but like Russia the mainstream media will try to keep the “homosexual” problem out of the public conscience. They don’t want their games to be turned into a “political” circus or whatever.

        Additionally, while the country is put in the spot light to a degree, the reality is FIFA has urged them to relax their laws, and not abolish them; which obviously means the laws themselves will not change before, during or after the FIFA games and FIFA itself has no intention of changing them; they just want them to relax

        These countries simply cannot be supported. They can practice their “Religions”; but we believe in equality. A world where men and women are equal, heterosexuals and homosexuals are equal, and people of all colors and countries are equal. For that reason, endorsements or boycotts by highly recognized institutions like FIFA or the IOC and their multi-national sponsors are huge political statements; whether they admit it or not

    2. Mihangel apYrs 10 Sep 2013, 7:04am

      the disapproval would not be universal, not even from the West.

  2. I can’t believe Piana Powa is so nieve to even imagine that a country liked Qatar would EVER change its laws on homosexuality!

    There is zero chance of this happening and FIFA are just making themelves look very stupid.

    If this is rally their point of view-why ever award the tournament to a homophobic state in the first place?

  3. Oh goody lets relax the legislation just for a sporting event.

    Gay men face up to 5 years in jail in this country. There is no recognition of same sex relationships.

    Why oh why do they insist on allowing these countries to host these events.

  4. countries like qatar would prefer not to discuss anti gay laws in front of international community but by punting themselves in the spotlight will have to address the issue one way or another. and in the future thanks to that scrutiny other countries with anti gay laws might think twice about applying to host international tournament

  5. What FIFA could have done:

    FIFA: “Before we award the World Cup, decriminalising homosexuality is to be a condition of holding the World Cup and no nation will get it without that.”

    Qatar: “Hmmm, we might have to think about that if we ever want the World Cup.”

    What FIFA actually did:

    FIFA: “Now we’ve already awarded you the World Cup we’d like you to decriminalise homosexuality.”

    Qatar: “Yeah, that’s not happening.”

    Nice use of your bargaining chips, FIFA. Oh wait, you never gave a damn about us in the first place.

    1. Mihangel apYrs 10 Sep 2013, 7:07am

      you suggest FIFA actually care.

      Some would say – here’s the name of my favorite (pseudo) charity. Now let’s talk about the world cup.

  6. “Relax” the laws? What does that even mean – relax? How about “scrap them entirely or we will not hold the World Cup in such a bigoted nation”

  7. It’s time sport’s governing bodies put a.complete halt to awarding international events to homophobic countries. If these places were operating apartheid policies, they would never be selected to host tournaments. Homophobia is the last human rights struggle. Sport must do whatever it can to bring it to an end.

  8. keith francis farrell 10 Sep 2013, 12:34am

    I don’t think FIFA needs any more clarity on Russia’s anti gay laws. It is perfectly obvious that they intend taking away all the rights of LGBT people just like Germany did to the Jewish people before the second world war. What we need to do is start boycotts against FIFA events and IOC events, and all the sponsors. equality for everyone has to be at the forefront of any international sporting or cultural event. This includes the commonwealth games. I am sorry, I live in Glasgow, but if we allow homophobic countries to take part in the games while they are putting laws into place to kill gay people, then we have to as a matter of equality say enough is enough. Being gay does not make us any less human. we have to be able to enjoy all the same rights and that includes the right to love someone of our choice and to feel safe in our homes, streets and work places.

  9. auntie babs 10 Sep 2013, 2:16am

    relax it???? abolish it, nothing else is acceptable.

  10. Fifa don’t care about gays.

    Fifa are only making noise because they’re worried about players playing in 50c heat, and wish they’d thought about that while accepting bribes for awarding the event to Qatar.

    They have been inundated with complaints about the heat – and are having to seriously consider a last minute relocation of either venue or timing.

    The gays issue is a side issue, they’re using it as “another bad thing about Qatar” so their removal of the event from Qatar is more justified.

    … which is a good thing – but it’s a shame it’s being used as a lever, rather than because Fifa give a damn about gay rights.

  11. liquafruta 10 Sep 2013, 9:55am

    As a gay man I worked in Qatar and in Oman and Dubai as well. Like everything else lip service is paid to the rules but i can assure the readers here that gay life goes on as long as it is not overt. Of course I fully accept that in an ideal world everyone should be open and accepting but I never found any problems all the years that I worked in these countries (albeit as an expat).

    1. Perhaps you were safe as an “expat”, but if you’d been an “economic migrant” (= a brown expat) it might have been different, as with those 3 dozen Filipinos deported some years ago.

      1. Westerners are generally safe in these countries unless they do something serious or blatantly ignore the cultural taboos of the country (like having sex on the beach). Other than that they are prepared to turn a blind eye to white Westerners.

        Very often migrants from Asia suffer more severe punishments than merely being deported. Personally I think Dubai and Qatar are vile places, the former reminds me of Las Vegas in the Middle East.

        1. I think that’s doing Las Vegas a disservice, I believe it at least has some positive or fun energy to it – Dubai is just revolting through and through.

          What I’ve read about Qatar, however, suggests rather surprisingly that (as far as it’s possible in such a dreadful part of the world) it’s in a different and rather more advanced league from Dubious Dubai. Despite the laws, apparently little action of any real sort has been taken against gay people in the last 15 years.

          1. I don’t think I’m doing it a disservice at all. It’s tacky, full of obese, selt-indulgent people. There are plenty of more vibrant and cosmopolitan places than Las Vegas, if you like the sight of millions of semi-conscious overweight Americans travelling though the mall like a fleet of interstate buses then go ahead and see it for yourself.

            Gay rights are important but not the only reason I go placesm I like culture too.

  12. Selecting Qatar and Russia for World Cups! What a farce and a nonsense!

  13. Having worked in the Middle East years ago, I imagine in Qatar your more likely to be punished for NOT having gay sex with someone.

    Russia, on the other hand, is a completely different kettle of fish and has to be tackled very seriously indeed to stop people getting seriously hurt.

  14. GingerlyColors 10 Sep 2013, 11:27am

    Wouldn’t it have been better if FIFA did not award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar. For a start, anti-homosexuality laws aside, does Qatar have the facilities to host the World’s biggest sporting event bar the Olympics in the first place?
    Sounds like shenanigans here.

    1. It’s obscenely rich – they’re said to spend US$1bn a year just on art acquisitions (US$250m for one Cézanne alone). I don’t think building the facilities is going to be an issue.

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