Qatar World Cup ambassador declares ‘homosexuality is illegal’, LGBTQ tourists worry
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Qatar World Cup ambassador declares ‘homosexuality is illegal’, LGBTQ tourists worry

As the Qatar World Cup has entered a frantic countdown stage, it is currently expected that more than 1.2 million international tourists will travel to Qatar to participate in the World Cup . However, since Qatar was selected as the host country by FIFA in December 2010, the Middle Eastern country, unprecedented in the World Cup’s history, has faced criticism and doubts, including for depriving LGBTQ people of their human rights.

Recently, Qatar’s World Cup ambassador, Khalid Salman, accepted a Wired interview with German media before the opening of the Arabian Gulf Nations Cup, and pointed out that the gay community is a taboo and hurt. This remark highlights the conservative country’s treatment of homosexuality. The problem immediately sparked concerns among LGBTQ tourists and countries alike.

‘Homosexuality is ideological harm and must accept our rules’

A former Qatar national team player, the 60-year-old is an ambassador for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar. In an interview, he told the German media that there must be a lot of foreign ideas or cultures pouring into Qatar during the World Cup, such as “homosexuality”.

He called homosexuality a banned word in Arabic, not only saying that homosexuality is illegal in Qatar, but also describing it as a “mental and spiritual harm”. In the end, Salman also emphasized that since he accepted to come to Qatar, he must accept the rules here. Due to the uproar caused by the remarks of the Qatar World Cup ambassador, the interview was immediately stopped by the press officer of the World Cup Organizing Committee.

Qatar World Cup ambassador declares 'homosexuality is illegal', LGBTQ tourists worry

Qatar has guaranteed the safety of LGBT fans

After raising concerns, Nancy Feather, the German federal minister who is also in charge of sports, criticized Salman’s remarks and said efforts were being made to improve the situation in Qatar. And she also traveled to Qatar last week to meet with the Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior of Qatar. Although the country’s position has not changed, the Prime Minister of the country has given all tourists (including LGBT) security guarantees, as long as they do not violate Qatar’s rules, that is, in the public The tourists will not be punished by the authorities if they make intimacy and cross-border behavior on the occasion.


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