Gianni Infantino, the president of FIFA, had a one-hour rant on the night of the World Cup’s first game before spending roughly 45 minutes responding to media queries on the acts of the Qatari government and a variety of other subjects.
FIFA World Cup 2022 controversy to start in Qatar
Will Reeve of ABC News provides a preview of what to anticipate from this year’s international soccer tournament and the host country, which has been under a lot of criticism.
Qatar’s DOHA, aka Gianni Infantino, claimed to be homosexual. that he has feminine feelings. He believes himself to be a migratory worker. He berated Europeans for criticizing Qatar’s record on human rights and justified the host nation’s impromptu decision to forbid beer from being served in World Cup stadiums.
On the eve of the World Cup’s opening game, the FIFA president gave a one-hour rant before spending roughly 45 minutes fielding questions from the media regarding the acts of the Qatari government and a variety of other subjects.
Infantino began his opening statement at his first World Cup press conference on Saturday by saying, “Today I feel Qatari.” “I feel Arab now.” My current mood is African. I feel gay today. I feel unable today. I feel like a migrant worker today.
Later, Infantino responded to a reporter who had noticed that he had omitted women from his unique announcement.
The FIFA president answered, “I feel like a woman.”
Ever since FIFA selected Qatar to host the world’s largest soccer event in 2010, the country has been the target of a barrage of criticism.
According to a 75-page report published this month by the London-based rights group Equidem, migrant workers who built Qatar’s World Cup stadiums frequently worked long hours under difficult circumstances and were subjected to discrimination, wage theft, and other abuses as their employers avoided responsibility.
Infantino defended the nation’s immigration laws and commended the administration for hiring migrants.
Infantino stated, “We in Europe close our borders and don’t let nearly any worker from those nations—who plainly earn extremely low incomes—work lawfully in our countries.” If Europe truly cared about the future of these people, especially the young ones, then it could follow Qatar’s example.
But assign them some tasks. Provide them with a future. Affirm their optimism. But this one-sided moral lesson-giving is just hypocritical.
Qatar is run by a hereditary emir who adheres to the ultraconservative Wahhabi school of Islam and maintains complete control over all political matters. Following a natural gas boom in the 1990s, Qatar underwent a transformation in recent years, but it has come under internal pressure to maintain its Bedouin and Islamic history.
Under intense international attention, Qatar has recently implemented a series of labor reforms that have received high marks from Equidem and other rights organizations. However, activists claim that there are still many cases of abuse and limited channels for employees to seek justice.
However, Infantino persisted in repeating the talking points of the Qatari government, which redirected criticism at the West.
Infantino, who relocated from Switzerland to live in Doha in advance of the World Cup, said, “What we Europeans have been doing for the past 3,000 years, we should be apologizing for the next 3,000 years before we start giving moral lessons to people.”
Amnesty International responded to Infantino’s remarks by claiming that by downplaying the cost migrant workers paid to make the tournament possible and FIFA’s responsibility for it, he was “brushing aside legitimate human rights criticisms.”
According to FIFA’s own laws, demands for equality, dignity, and compensation cannot be viewed as part of a cultural conflict, according to Steve Cockburn, director of economic and social justice at Amnesty International.
Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, the emir of Qatar, declared in a televised statement on October 25 that his country had been “subjected to an unparalleled campaign that no host country has ever endured,” which marked a turning point in the nation’s response to criticism.
Since then, government officials and senior World Cup organizing personnel have criticized requests to establish a compensation fund for the families of migrant workers as a publicity ploy and some European criticism as racist.
SOMETHING ABOUT EUROPE?
Laws in Qatar that prohibit homosexuality, restrict certain freedoms for women and refuse to provide citizenship to migrants have drawn a lot of criticism.
“How many homosexuals were charged in Europe?” Infantino reiterated earlier remarks that, until recent generations, European nations had comparable legislation. “Sorry, it took time. We seem to overlook
He recalled that women had not been granted the right to vote until the 1990s in one part of Switzerland.
Additionally, he criticized European and American nations for not opening their doors to soccer-playing girls and women that FIFA and Qatar had fought to help leave Afghanistan the previous year.
He said that only Albania had taken action.
In contravention of a FIFA restriction and as part of the Dutch “One Love” campaign, seven of the 13 European nations competing in the World Cup have announced that their captains will wear an anti-discrimination armband during games.
FIFA has refrained from making any significant public comments on that matter or in response to calls from European soccer federations for FIFA to support a fund to provide compensation for the families of migrant workers.
The retorts started on Saturday.
In collaboration with several U.N. organizations, FIFA now has its own armband designs with more general phrases. “FootballUnitesTheWorld,” “Save The Planet,” “Protect Children,” and “Share The Meal” are printed on the armbands for the group games.
The term “no discrimination” will be used during quarterfinal games.
The German soccer federation rejected the design a few hours later and decided to stick with the heart-shaped, multicolored “One Love” armband.
FIFA also plans to establish a legacy fund using the money it earns from this year’s World Cup, and it will accept donations from anyone who so desires, including its detractors.
Infantino added, “And people who invest a particular amount will be a part of a board that may decide where the money goes.”
Soccer in the host nation has benefited directly from legacy monies from previous World Cups, including $100 million from FIFA awarded to South Africa in 2010 and Brazil in 2014. A portion of the funds was used for even more enigmatic projects and new automobiles for authorities.
This time, education and a “labor excellence center” in collaboration with the International Labor Organization are two objectives for worldwide projects.
According to this week’s British media sources, the cheering fans outside the team hotel were Indians who resided and worked in Qatar and were sporting England shirts.
It came after news of Qatar’s plan to cover the costs of 1,500 fans from the 31 visiting countries traveling to the World Cup, singing in the opening ceremony on Sunday, and staying to promote the host nation on social media.
It supported the persistent myth that Qatar pays people to follow sports.
“You understand what this is? Racism exists here. Regarding the criticism of the England cheer squad, Infantino argued that it was “pure racism.” “Everyone in the world is entitled to support whoever they choose.
Infantino said with the knowledge that he will be reelected as FIFA president in March without a challenger.
For some of you, unfortunately, “It looks like I will be here for another four years,” he told reporters on Saturday.