Even as the 2014 FIFA World Cup picks up steam in Brazil, attention has once again swung back to Qatar’s hosting of the 2022 event, following fresh allegations of corruption from the UK’s Sunday Times, and a lengthy rebuttal from Qatar’s bid team.
In today’s edition, which is behind a paywall, the weekly newspaper claims that FIFA officials deliberately ignored an assessment of the potential security risks of holding the tournament in Qatar, which had been judged to be high.
It cites a report written by South African police chief Andre Pruis, who said his conclusion was based on Qatar’s proximity to countries with an Al Qaeda presence. He also said it would be difficult to ensure security in a small country where all of the venues would inevitably be located near each other.
However, the newspaper quotes documents that acknowledge the report, produced shortly before the decision was awarded to Qatar, was based on “a very limited threat assessment,” primarily sourced from US anti-terrorism information.
There was no mention of whether other potential hosts, such as the US or UK, faced potential risks, despite both countries being the subject of attacks by terrorists.
The Sunday Times also stated that the chief executive of Qatar’s World Cup bid, Hassan al-Thawadi, gave FIFA official Mohamed Bin Hammam support during his campaign to replace Sepp Blatter as FIFA president.
At the time, Bin Hammam, a Qatari, had yet to be called into question over bribery allegations and banned from football by FIFA.
Finally, the Sunday Times suggested impropriety in the appointment of former FIFA Head of Security Chris Eaton as the director of the International Centre for Sport Security in Doha in 2012.
Eaton had previously been asked to investigate a voting pact between Qatar and Spain-Portugal, who had bid for the 2018 World Cup.
Eaton’s lawyers told the paper that there had been “nothing improper whatsoever” about the appointment.
Faced with this renewed onslaught, the 2022 World Cup organizing body, the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SCDL), has issued a detailed statement calling the allegations “baseless and riddled with innuendo.”
It’s the first time the committee has issued such a frank and forthright response, after previously preferring only to deny the allegations.
In the statement, the SCDL argues that the allegations were released as part of a deliberate attempt to influence a FIFA investigation into long-standing accusations of wrongdoing during the awarding of both the 2018 World Cup in Russia and Qatar’s 2022 bid. It states:
“They are… a flagrant attempt to prejudice an ongoing independent investigation. If the source of these leaks were genuinely concerned with the evidence, they would have provided the leaked documents to (FIFA Ethics Chief Michael) Garcia, as he requested, instead of offering them to the media.”
The statement does not specify who would be behind such an orchestrated leak, and when asked for clarification, a 2022 spokesman told Doha News that the committee had “no further comment to make” on the matter.
The committee goes on to point out that its officials have complied with all requests to be interviewed as part of FIFA’s investigation, adding that, as the presumed underdog in the race, the bid team had “worked harder than anyone else,” but had always kept within the bidding rules.
The SDCL also sought to distance itself from Bin Hamman, stating that “Mr. Bin Hammam is from Qatar, but he was not a member of Qatar’s bid team.” They say that the team had a working relationship with him, which was “not improper.”
The committee added:
“We believed a World Cup in Qatar would provide an opportunity to confound stereotypes, break down cultural barriers and give the rest of the world a better understanding of the Arab nations and the Middle East,” they write. “Sadly, at this point, that has not been allowed to happen.”
The Sunday Times stories are just the latest in a long stream of critical articles about Qatar in international press, and from UK media in particular.
Last week, FIFA President Sepp Blatter suggested that that the corruption claims had been motivated by racism, an argument that has clearly chimed with many Qataris, who’ve been discussing their views on Twitter.
One prominent Qatari media personality, Ilham Badr, went as far as calling upon her fellow nationals to boycott the UK this summer, in protest at the negative media coverage.
Last week, she tweeted to her 105,000 followers to avoid taking their summer vacations in the UK for now, saying:
أدعو جميع القطريين ومحبي #قطر لهجرة #بريطانيا هذا الصيف واستبدالها بعواصم جميلة غيرعنصرية ولا تنزلق حكومتها لتشويه بلادنا . @ukinqatar
— إلهام بدر (@elhambader1) June 12, 2014
Translation: “I call on all Qataris and lovers of Qatar to boycott Britain this summer and replace it with other beautiful cities that are not racist and whose governments are not defaming our country.”
The message prompted several replies, from many people who agreed with her. However, her views do not seem to have prompted a full scale boycott campaign on Twitter, despite reports to the contrary in local newspapers.
Despite talk of a summer travel boycott, it’s clear that the UK and Qatar still consider themselves important trading partners.
At a UK trade and investment conference in London this week, Gareth O’Brien, Director of Trade and Investment at the British Embassy in Doha, told delegates that Qatar mattered “more and more” to the UK:
“Last year the UK exported £100mn worth of cars; we export pharmaceuticals, security equipment, luxury goods – you name it, we sell it to Qatar” he said.
Qatar is the UK’s third largest export market in the region, with exports totaling £1.46 billion in 2013, a 12% increase on 2012. British oil giant Shell is the single largest foreign investor in Qatar with an investment of $21bn.
Meanwhile, the Qatari government is thought to have at least £22 billion invested in the UK, including stakes in airport operator BAA, supermarket chain Sainsbury’s, Barclays bank, the London Stock Exchange, Europe’s tallest building, The Shard, and world famous store Harrods.
Though the idea of a boycott doesn’t seem to be gaining momentum, the hashtag #فوبيا_قطر (Qatar Phobia) seems to have caught on, with many Qataris expressing their frustrations at what they see as baseless allegations motivated by jealousy and racism.
#فوبيا_قطر النجاح يولد الحقد والكره من أصحاب النفوس الضعيفة وبدل ان يعمل ويجتهد يحاول تدمير والتقليل من شأن أي نجاح يحققه الخصم .
— Khalid قطر (@QtarKhalid) January 25, 2013
“Success breeds hatred,” writes @QtarKhalid, motivating “weak souls” to “belittle any success achieved by an opponent.”
Meanwhile, some Qatari tweets have pointed to the apparent weakness of today’s new claims in the Sunday Times, whilst others have called for the country to step up its PR efforts to counter all claims made against Qatar’s bid.
@Halawala I'm not liking how our local media dealing with it as an all imperial conspiracy theory. we seriously need better PR here!!!
— AbdulRahman Al Baker (@Aalbaker) June 15, 2014
The worst part of all this is that both sides are talking like they’re 100% correct. Not just the people involved but the supporters, too.
Looking forward to seeing the fanboyism represented here in the comments.
Qataris boycott the UK?
Think that would render Qatar Airways chance of ever being profitable at around about, nil.
And as for the racism accusation – people in glass houses…
I’ve never seen a country with as big a crush on another country as Qatar has on Britain, so I’m pretty sure that plenty of riyals will continue to be changed into pounds over the summer and beyond.
And can we please just cool it with the racism? Pot meet kettle.
I’m not sure they ever aim to be profitable in the conventional sense.
There is no chance of the UK being Boycotted as it is far too popular as a destination. After all, who buys anything in Doha given the prices. Qatar Airways does not rely on the Qatari segment of the market for its revenue. There just isn’t enough of them as a single group. The revenue comes from transit pax.
I wouldn’t be so sure. Whilst transit pax comprise the bulk of volume, as demonstrated by who stays on the bus, I’d suggest there’s a higher concentration of pax going direct in the pricier seats. You’d certainly hope so if you were going to launch an all business class A319 service, or 1st class, or your marquee aircraft (787, A380) on the route.
I would agree with you if there were Qatari in the seats but the majority are paid for by companies in and out of the Gulf. While Qatari pax tend to book business they are vastly outnumbered by company traffic.
I’d still wager that London grosses the most Qatari premium revenue on the route network.
That may be true and quite possible but the airline is more than just the London route. 5 flights per day with a 319 now doing all business is a very good service but again those seats could be filled by others. The 319 is just to guard the slot.
UK GDP? – a couple of trillion
Qatari investment? – a few billion
I’m a Brit working here in Qatar. When I first arrived, I made a rule that I would never join in any kind of online discussion, because I’ve always felt they’re mostly used by people who just aim to wind people up. However, today is an exception.
All I want to really emphasize is that just because these newspapers are based in Britain, it doesn’t mean they speak for Britain. Personally, I don’t think anything that is written in a newspaper owned by Murdoch is worth wiping my shoes with. It may be that during the Qatar bidding process there were some sweeteners thrown in, but we have to point out that this is nothing new. Just use google and you can instantly find out that the English bidding team gave all the wives Mulberry handbags. The Australian bidding team gave the wives jewelry and paid for holidays in the country. And this is all before we point out that the English bidding team gave members of FIFA the chance to spend days in the company of David Beckham, David Cameron and the future King of England. The American bidding team sat them down for dinner with Bill Clinton, Brad Pitt, Arnie, Spike Lee, Oscar de la Hoya etc etc. What are all these once in a lifetime opportunities, if not a form of bribery?
The British press are simply printing as much ignorant, misguided information as they can, purely because they think if they keep throwing it about, it will stick, Qatar will lose the World Cup and England will get it instead. But I’ve got to stress they don’t speak for all of us. Please don’t suggest boycotting the UK, or start to treat British people in the country differently. I for one totally support Qatar’s bid and hope I’m still here to see it.
I share your reservations about the Murdoch press, but it’s the racism angle that sticks in my gullet. Us Brits are a lot of things, but, as a country, we’re certainly not racist, even if we do have our fair share of loons kicking around.
As for bribery, I also agree with your point. It takes many different shapes and forms, and no-one is whiter than white.
FIFA haven’t got much time for England, so the chances of it ‘coming home’ are pretty much somewhere between nil and 0. In many ways, this is a shame, because as the Premier League and the Olympics demonstrated, UK PLC put on a good show.
It certainly should go to the Middle East and you’d hope it would generate more interest than the pathetic crowds you see at QSL games. I always believed it should be spread across several gulf states.
I’m really dubious about Qatar’s ability to be ready for it given their track record on major infrastructure projects, but let’s see.
One thing for sure is that they’re going to have to get used to scrutiny like they have never, ever seen before.
Just to play devils advocate, why should it go to the Middle East? Because they have not hosted before? Because it’s “Their time”? Outside of the Qatar 2022 committee, did any other Gulf State or indeed ME country even want it? Are we going to have the same scenario for future olympics? I agree it’s unfair to racially profile a country ( Although Septic Blatter just did recently). All newspapers (Sorry DN) should be treated with caution, irrespective of their country of origin. No one wanted USA94 for example, but funnily it turned out to be the most successful in terms of attendance of any world cup…….Qatar will be ready, they have no choice. As I have said before, it’s done, FIFA are fallible, prone to ‘External’persuasion and in some cases, downright antiquated in their procedures (Aka World cup Voting). FiFA will sit on this now and ride the storm. The 2022 Venue is going nowhere.
I’m not convinced they will ride it out. I think a lot will depend on whether Blatter is re-elected.
I wonder what the organising committee think when they sit back and look at what is going on Brazil?
I really hope they do ride it out and keep hold of it. I have no idea what the agenda the papers have is, and I agree I don’t think it is racism, but there is definitely some reason, there must be! There seems to be proof that other bidding nations were behaving in the same way, it’s not being reported in the British papers. There are violent protests and rocks being thrown at TV studios in Brazil, whilst the actual world cup is happening, right now, and it’s not being reported. We’re 4 years away from a World Cup in a nation which truly does have a track record for racism, and just invaded a neighbouring country; no one cares, not a word is being printed about it. All they care about is trying to bring down Qatar, which isn’t for another 8 years!
I know there are so many challenges to overcome, but I think it would be such an important event to have in this part of the world. Have you ever read some of the comments on British newspapers websites? Or Twitter? Or even on here?? I’ve read articles from genuine ‘journalists’ in which they say that all women who come to a World Cup here would HAVE to cover up their hair. Some say you’d have to wear an abaya. The same articles have said that alcohol is completely banned in the country. It’s 90% humidity all year round. It’s really obvious that they are completely ignorant about life in this part of the world.
I’ve been here just a year now, and I’m ashamed to admit that, before I came, I had the same kind of misconceptions: I thought it would be an awfully strict place, I didn’t think there would be anything for westerners to do, I thought all the women wearing abayas would be miserable people, scowling at me whenever they see me, and most of all I thought I wouldn’t be welcome in Qatar. Then, I got here, instantly made friends with all the arabic people I work with and realised that, despite any dress differences, we’re virtually identical people who like to chat about films and football and music, and I’ve been welcomed by everyone I’ve met here, and to be honest, I’m having the time of my life! I’ve been to see world class football teams, tennis, golf, bicycles, motox, the motogp, jet skis, been quad biking on the dunes, horse racing, camel racing etc etc etc. THAT is exactly what the World needs. They need to come out here and see what kind of a place it is. Then maybe people wouldn’t be, by default, scared or wary of Muslims. Which is what is currently happening, purely because of the way our press represents them.
Anyway, that’s enough from me, I’ll give it a rest now, I’ve said my bit. I find it funny that there’s some wind up merchant on Twitter suggesting I’m not British or that I must have been paid. Kind of justifies why I tend to stay away from commenting online… Some people are so ignorant that they assume that, if your opinion isn’t the same as theirs, you must be fictional.
Well, I for one think it would be a shame if you weren’t to continue articulating your viewpoint. Well reasoned arguments that look to me like they are thought through, and influenced by a glass half-full mentality.
I’d like to think I had a similar impression of Qatar. For me, the greater problems were institutional, and have been debated relentlessly. Qatar is a young country that needs to develop, and is having to do so under the glare of a pretty full on spotlight. I think some of the criticism is justified, some of it not.
Let’s hope whatever happens, we see change for good, and a greater understanding of the world we live in and the people’s in it.
Yes the Qataris are way off the mark, a paper based in the UK owned by an American Assuie and from that they conclude Britain is racist.
I look forward to Qatar’s Bid Committee taking legal action against Murdoch to get redress unless they have something to hide. Their denials are absolute but they are not backing them with action.
“I look forward to Qatar’s Bid Committee taking legal action against Murdoch to get redress unless they have something to hide. Their denials are absolute but they are not backing them with action.”
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what is referred to when people say “backhanded”
Why single out Murdoch? Scandalous stories can be found published in The Guardian (not owned by Murdoch) The Daily Mail (not owned by Murdoch) The Financial Times (not owned by Murdoch) The Daily Telegraph (not owned by Murdoch) The Observer (not owned by Murdoch) and The Independent (not owned by Murdoch). When so many newspapers all seem to be coalescing around the same narrative, it’s either because they are all part of the same grand fabrication, or because it’s probably true.
It’s okay; some people here have a hard time understanding that just because something is printed in the newspaper, it must mean the government approved it. Kind of funny considering all the grief Qatar has had over the years becasue of Al Jazeera, all the while insisting that that Qatari offcials don’t dicate what Al Jazeera does and doesn’t broadcast.
I believe that Al Jazeera is fairly independent and can broadcast pretty much what it likes on events outside of Qatar. However it has been told events inside Qatar are strictly off limits, so it has censorship by the government and is funded by the government. That is a bit different to privatley owned newspapers in other countries.
It would be good if Al Jazeera had a debate on the allegations on Qatar 2022 and whether they had any merit, rather than just publishing the government line.
In all fairness, if there were events inside Qatar worth reporting by the likes of Al Jazeera, who’s stopping Qatar’s frienemies from reporting them? Same reason why Al Jazeera had rarely had anything to report on the UAE and Oman most of the time.
I would have thought that 19 dead at Villagio and the subsequent farce of a court case would be worth reporting on.
they were. at least in Al-Jazeera arabic. granted not reported enough but it was mentioned
As Mohammed said below, they were. However, keep in mind that the Villagio case is a local matter, and Al Jazeera isn’t really a local channel. How often have you seen Al Jazeera report on simalir cases from accross the world, or even just the Arab world?
For example, over the years there’d been many cases in Egypt where passenger ships crossing the red sea have sunk due to being overcrowded or such, and Al Jazeera would only report these stories as a news item. Still, nobody is stopping any international news channels like BBC or CNN from reporting the Villagio case and subsequent trials.
James, thank you for the Voice of reason. Anything to do with football seems to bring the worst out in people. The media in the UK is loving every moment of Qatar’s discomfort, simply because it allows them to talk about their favourite lowest common denominator- football. I too am British, and I too have no respect for the Murdoch press. I would say to my colleagues and friends here in Qatar, that this media driven campaign has little to do with fairness, more to do with the love of the media to destroy the successful, and of course, will distract people from the disappointment of England not winning the World Cup in Brazil- I predict.
I think it has more to do with selling newspapers really. It’s a juicy story, rich oil and gas state, allegedly using its vast wealth to buy a football tournament, with FIFA and its long history of corruption a willing accomplice. Sepp Blatter presiding over the most disastorous period in FIFA’s history in terms of PR yet making the organisation and FIFA members very rich, while no one is taking into account the poor honest football supporter. That sells newspapers and makes money. I doubt the Sunday Times would publish if it was all lies as the resulting legal action for libel would cost them millions.
Still no sign of Bin Hamman, FIFA or Qatar 2022 taking legal action against various newspapers they allege are printing untruths. I think we all know why, even if the Sunday Times cannot prove everything 100% too much would come out to dsicredit FIFA, the bidding process and Qatar 2022.
James. Thank you for putting into words what so many of us Brits in Qatar feel. I will never forget the night that Qatar won the right to host 2022. I was as thrilled and excited as any Qatari and still am. No doubt in my mind, Qatar will put on a superb World Cup. But what I don’t understand is why the British press is such a sore loser and insist on spewing all their venom (and appalling journalism) over Qatar when they weren’t even bidding for 2022. Take it out on Russia, lads, they were the ones who beat you, not Qatar.
As to the comments on why it should come to the Middle East, I think that the tripe printed in the western press on the Arab world in general speaks for itself. The World Cup will help people understand the culture and people better and, with luck, lead to the next generation of leaders having a better understanding of the region and thereby avoid some of the horrendous decisions of the past which were based, in large part, on appalling ignorance.
I’m 100% behind Qatar and by not suing (yet) they are not rising to the bait. That way they stay above the fray and maintain the moral high ground. And really ST do you think you can buy the World Cup for a paltry $5m?
Couldn’t of said it better myself. Apart from them hoping England gets it instead. England didn’t bid for the same year as Qatar. If it goes to any other nation (it won’t inshallah) it would go to one of the other nations that bid that year.
Again no clear action by Qatar’s Bid Committee. If the allegations are untrue why are they not taking legal action against the Times and The Telegraph? I note they have also now said that although Bin Hamman was not an offical member of the Bid Committiee they had a relationship with them, that is a big change from their previous statements.
Although I understand Qataris have no idea of what a free press is, you cannot equate media in the UK to the UK government so I don’t understand the boycott. I am sure the UK government does not want the newspapers to publish all these allegations but there is nothing they can do about it. As for saying Britain is racist, wow. No coments….
How do they get “racist” out of UK papers doing what they always do? Talk about unsubstantiated accusations…
It’s a bit of a tough sell to convince people in this part of the world that what newspapers write, and what elected government representatives think, can be two different things.
Funny you should say that. I had a conversation with an Egyptian colleague last week and she asked why the UK government was attacking Qatar. I pointed out that it was the UK newspapers not the government but she laughed and said the papers only printed it because the government told them to. I guess when you grow up in Arab dictatorships you find it hard to believe that other countries operate differently.
That’s actually a very interesting revelation you’re describing, seemingly in both directions, and something I had to get used to in this part of the world. I will never take the right to free press for granted again (among other rights that I would consider “basic”) after living in Qatar. I have to continually remind friends and family back home that Qatar is not a “free” country.
Define “elected” in relation to this part of the world. 🙂
I was referring to the elected government representatives in the UK. I don’t think you could use elected and government in the same sentence in much of the Arab world.
Case in point is the Gulf News this morning (ok, every morning!): front page story is about the opinion of a guy at a PR firm that also happens to think the UK is filled wtih a bunch of bigots. Shoot, everyone has an opinion. I guess what makes this guy’s opinion fit to print is because he’s in PR and agrees with the local government? My employer provides a daily copy of the GN in our break room and it never fails to produce fodder for good laughs among the emoployes here.
1- “allegations motivated by jealousy and racism”…so childish! Grow up and come out of your bubble; the world works differently.
2- I wonder why Bin Hammam has disappeared from the radars if he was so innocent and acted in fair play.
3- Qataris boycotting the UK? Please do, so Qatar Airways will feel the pinch of loosing money!
I fancy a holiday in the UK this year and I will support my Qatari brothers by boycoting Harrods.
The ‘racist’ jibe just keeps making me laugh.
Last week at the FIFA general meeting, everyone got rather annoyed and angry with Mr Blatter. It appears that most people here think all the negative news is coming out of the UK, but last week will show you how others around Europe and the world feel the same.
To say that the British press is only printing this so that England get the world cup instead is also complete tosh. They didnt bid for 2022 so how can they get it?! If Qatar losses it, it will go to one of the other bidding nations of 2022, nobody else.
…and hence therein lies the problem. It takes two to make the inducements work and FIFA itself has shown to be an opaque organinsation designed to enrich its members not the game itself. So if you are bidding to host a FIFA WC, then you know you have to abide by the unwritten rules. Bin Hamman knew how to play the game, but Blatter plays it better and got him banned for life.
Now Beckanbauer is suspended from FIFA for 90 days for refusing to cooperate with the corruption enquiry over his links to Qatar’s bid. When will it all stop?
“We believed a World Cup in Qatar would provide an opportunity to confound stereotypes, break down cultural barriers and give the rest of the world a better understanding of the Arab nations and the Middle East”. I say this not with prejudice but with pragmatism, that as long as the Kafala is in place, it will continue to define Qatar as a nation and as a culture in the eyes of the world, and the latest abstention from the UN charter on forced labour simply underscores the problem. Qatar shoots itself in the foot every minute of every working day.
“What do you mean you can’t leave when you want to?!”
A week ago I said dn.co and all the expats on it can go get beeped and made a promise not to read the website again, mostly due to the intentional negative spin dn.co editors take on stories causes my high blood pressure to rise. Also, I finally got a job so I’ll have less time to waste reading bigoted comments by doha expat community.
dn.co happened to be open on my desktop and I couldn’t help but click through.. it is so difficult for me not to respond to the dumb comments over here.. so so difficult… almost itching to say something… correct some other things 🙁
just like i quit smoking.. i can quit dn.co
I knew you’d be back. 😉
Welcome back to the madhouse….
“I wish I knew how to quit you”, as Jack said to Ennis.
See, yer feeling the love. Welcome back to the fold. It will be good to have someone trying to fight FIFA and the Qatari bid’s corner, it makes life more interesting.
you know you love it
نصيحة من شخص مر بنفس المشكلة: الناس على الإنترنت بتقول إلي بتقوله لأن الأغلبية يتسترون وراء أسماء مستعارة. لاتضيع وقتك في محاولة إنك تتناقش معاهم لأنك بتحرق أعصابك عالفاضي. في النهاية، كلامهم السلبي لايقدم و لا يؤخر. إذا حاب ترد عليهم جرب ردود مختصرة و يفضل بصيغة سؤال، و ياريت ـتأسلهم عن بيوتهم إلي من جزاز. و في النهاية تذكر الآتي:
Go ahead then
here we go again
Everyone seems to be so pre occupied with this and that and other trivial issues. Has anyone given a thought to the time when the football lovers and fans from Italy, Netherlands, Brazil, Portugal, etc start arriving and want to celebrate in the streets. It might then need a whole new cultural makeover for everyone as this football lovers don’t follow any fixed rules on clothes, fashion or drinks as can be clearly seen from whats happening in Brazil
From having gone to World Cups before and seeing pictures and videos of my friends following England in Brazil right now, the whole ‘partying in the street’ atmosphere has always been a major thing. With fans from different countries occupying the town squares leading up to their games, having plenty of drink, a good sing song and often wearing very little! Thats just part of the atmosphere at any World Cup.
perhaps slowing down the partying on the streets would be a good change to the world cup, at least to stop this from happening
No one wants to see sick pedophiles taking advantage of poor underage girls and this is certainly a completely unrelated problem to groups of football fans wanting to have fun by chanting slogans and having a few drinks
just saying a world cup in a country with a more conservative culture might see less prostituion on the streets, drunken fights,destruction of property, public indecency etc. other world cups have seen a spike in these activities during the celebrations. maybe one in qatar might be different or at least less sever
Agree, but I think somehow a sweet spot must be found where people are allowed to party in public and enjoy a few drinks. Certainly there will be some that take it too far and that must be expected, or maybe they’ll say none of this behavior at all is allowed and people who want that shouldn’t bother coming.
It’s something that needs to be addressed otherwise come 2022 you will have people that act in a way that is currently not allowed in Qatar, so what would happen? Would they be deported? Jailed? Fined? Or tolerated for the duration of the cup? Or maybe create large fan zones near stadiums and tell them to stay there?
i hope a sweet spot in the middle between having fun and chaos is found not just for qatar world cup but every world cup.
depends on what you mean by way not allowed in qatar, if hiring prostitutes, destruction of property or violent fights then yes they should be jailed, fined and deported such behaviour shouldn’t be tolerated anywhere, if you mean some dancing, music, possibly some indecent exposure then i think the rules if not changed can at least be relaxed for the duration of the world cup.
The latter of course, if that can be achieved it would certainly make it a huge success
and if the temperatures are as hot and humid as they are now during this time of the year not many fans could be expected to keep their clothes on by the time the games are over for the day. Perhaps Brazil being a free and tolerant country adds to the fun and enjoyment and makes the whole package of being in Brazil for the games a exciting and memorable one
Well it seems all bidding nations including Qatar and England were paying ‘inducements’ to FIFA members which are directly against FIFA’s own rules. Seems 2018 and 2022 should be rebid with all nations that took part in the original bid being disqualified.
Ah, the Trinidad Express – the last bastion of journalistic integrity…
and I bet they’re another bunch of racist b@$tar)s as well!
Yeah those black people making allegations against white and brown people, racists!
Well they do have an interest in uncovering the corrupt activities of their politician and it seems everyone wanted to bribe Jack Warner due to his influence within FIFA. Don’t forget this man was a close pal of Bin Haman, Qatar’s highest football offical who apparently had nothing to do with Qatar’s bid and is also the man who sold WC tickets on the black market at more than one WC. His son was also ran companies that made money out of his fathers connections in FIFA and various WCs. Look him up, he has a 30 crime sheet of corruption within the game.
In an attempt to be realistic…
The ST is not a jingoistic ‘Red Top’ paper. Yes, it must sell print, but it would be wasting time relying on pure sensationalism to compete with the popular papers in UK. I might not agree with ST op-eds, but I would be persuaded to credit it with ‘higher than the average’ journalistic integrity?
With a reputation to protect, I would imagine that any accusations made will have been substantiated, checked, double checked, and checked again? Whereas a Red Top might risk taking liberties, with facts, and publish anyway, a broadsheet must consider the risk more carefully.
Both FIFA, and Qatar, have unlimited financial resources to engage the best legal representation available to defend themselves against the ST. So far, not even a court injunction to not publish any further accusations?
As has been pointed out by other commentators, if the accused parties are being libeled, then there will be a queue of high powered legal companies willing to defend them. The pay day itself would be irresistible.
So far – nothing?
….and there is the biggest mystery or maybe not….
A stroll through Knightsbridge without the usual selection of Ferraris, Bentleys and Lamboghinis with Qatari number plates just won’t be the same. And what about all the empty seats on the A380 to Heathrow? This has the potential to be serious!
Lol. Hopefully the WC go NOT to Qatar.