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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Qatar Could Pivot on LGBT Policies During World Cup

  • New policies would see security officials exercise "less intervention and more mediation."
  • LBGT soccer fan groups have said they would boycott the tournament due to FIFA's silence regarding Qatar's treatment of the LGBT community.
Qatar 2022

The 2022 FIFA World Cup is less than three weeks away, but public pressure is forcing Qatar to consider a major adjustment in its policies for the treatment of LGBT fans at the event.

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, a tournament organizational body, presented procedures that would see security officials exercise “less intervention and more mediation” and practice “leniency” unless physical integrity or property is threatened, according to Bloomberg.

One policy states that people displaying rainbow flags should not be approached, detained, or prosecuted.

Security forces would also be instructed to not disrupt fans marching and chanting, and leave peaceful protesters who are not a “security issue” alone.

  • In October, human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell claimed he was arrested after staging an LGBT protest in the country. 
  • Human Rights Watch recently reported that security forces arbitrarily arrested and abused LGBT Qataris.

The presented policy changes, which were not developed or approved by the main Qatar organizing committee, follow announcements from LGBT soccer fan groups that they would boycott the tournament due to FIFA’s stance regarding the country’s treatment of the LGBT community. 

The World Cup kicks off on Nov. 20 and ends on Dec. 18.

Additional Accommodations 

As the event nears, an additional 70,000 rooms — starting at $120 per night — have been made available via the Qatar Accommodation Agency portal. 

Accommodations for the event have been limited, with Qatar offering approximately 1,000 tents on the outskirts of Doha and three cruise ships as lodging options.

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