Saudi Arabia’s Sports Minister assures that “everyone will be welcome” to the 2034 World Cup

“Like any other nation, we have rules that everyone must follow and respect”

LONDON, Dec. 8 (dpa/EP) –

The Minister of Sports of Saudi Arabia, Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal, has assured that everyone will be welcome to the 2034 World Cup, for which the Arab country is the only candidate to organize it, despite the criminalization of the activity. sexual relations between people of the same sex.

The Middle Eastern kingdom will almost certainly host the finals in 11 years, after being left as the only candidate after Australia resigned.

“Everyone is welcome in the kingdom,” Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal said in an interview with the BBC regarding concerns about what conditions in Saudi Arabia will be like for people from the LGBTIQ community.

“Like any other nation, we have rules and regulations that everyone must follow and respect. When we come to the UK we respect the rules, whether we believe in them or not. In the 85 events we have held so far we have not had any problems,” he added.

The same problem occurred before and during the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. At that tournament, stadium security guards confiscated rainbow-colored items from spectators.

FIFA also threatened the captains of seven countries with sporting sanctions, starting with a yellow card, if they wore rainbow-coloured ‘One Love’ armbands at the tournament.

That competition was held in winter due to the oppressive summer heat in the Middle East, which caused disruption in many leagues in Europe, but Prince Adbulaziz said it was not certain that it would need to be repeated in Saudi Arabia.

“Why not see what possibilities there are of doing it in summer? Whether it’s summer or winter it doesn’t matter to us, as long as we make sure we offer the right environment to host an event like this,” he concluded.

2023-12-08 12:32:58
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