There will be no discrimination at the World Cup, says Qatari Emir

By Chimezie Nebolisa

Qatar’s ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani said that all fans will be welcomed to this year’s World Cup “without discrimination” in a bid to ease fears raised by LGBTQ activists.

The Emir told the UN General Assembly that Qatar’s people would be “opening our doors for all (fans) without discrimination to enjoy the football matches and the amazing atmosphere of the tournament. The Qatari people will receive with open arms football fans from all walks of life,” the emir told the assembly of world leaders, without mentioning any specific group. The world will see that one of the small and medium-size countries is able to host global events with exceptional success, in addition to its ability to provide a spacious ambience for diversity and constructive interaction between peoples.”

Qatar bills itself as a conservative state and the rights of women and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community have come under the spotlight in the buildup to the World Cup.