“It has seriously damaged the image and integrity of football”

BarcelonaTough position of the European Parliament in relation to the World Cup in Qatar, marked by the systematic violation of the rights of women and homosexuals and also by the death of thousands of foreign workers hired to build the stadiums. The Eurochamber passed a condemnation resolution this Thursday and charges directly against FIFA: it accuses it of having “severely damaged the image and integrity of world football” and links the choice of Qatar as its headquarters to corruption. rampant, systemic and deeply rooted” within the federation.

The text, which denounces “the lack of transparency and the clear absence of a responsible risk assessment” in the choice of headquarters that was made in 2010, regrets “the death of thousands of migrant workers and the injuries suffered by workers during preparations” for the World Cup and calls for “accountability”. The Eurochamber calls on FIFA to contribute to the implementation of “a global reparation program for the families” of the victims as “compensation for the working conditions” to which they have been subjected and regrets that the fund put in place so far by Qatar has excluded many workers. It also calls on Doha authorities to fully investigate the deaths and facilitate legal avenues to seek justice and demand accountability.

In order to avoid new situations like this in the future, the European Parliament asks the member states, and especially those with major football leagues – such as Germany, France, Italy and Spain – to exert pressure to deeply reform FIFA. The Eurochamber is committed to introducing democratic and transparent processes for the choice of the countries where the World Cups will be held and to guarantee a strict application of the criteria of human rights and sustainability. And he concludes that international sporting events should not be awarded to countries where there are violations of fundamental rights.

The resolution also takes advantage of the agreement to criticize Qatar’s systematic discrimination against women and the LGBTQ+ community, an issue that has been at the center of controversy in recent days due to the censorship that FIFA and Qatar have applied to the One bracelet Love, that intended to take a few selections. In protest, the German national team was photographed on Wednesday before playing against Japan with the players of the starting eleven covering their mouths with their hands. A half-hearted protest, because none of them wore the armband censored for fear of sanctions.

The Commission does not think so

The position of the European Parliament contrasts with that of the European Commission, which last Monday defended the celebration of the World Cup in Qatar and the changes that, it says, have taken place in the country as a result of the event. “Qatar has made progress in recent years in labor rights,” pointed out the Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, during the plenary session of the Eurochamber in Strasbourg. Several MEPs reprimanded him for these words, calling the World Cup a “tragedy” and recalling that a few investigations placed around 6,500 deaths in the country as a result of the event.


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