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FIFA urges World Cup teams to ‘Focus on football’ in Qatar


FIFA has called on teams attending the controversial World Cup in Qatar to “focus on football” and stop “giving moral lessons” in a letter revealed by Sky News on Thursday. Qatar has faced criticism for its human rights record over the treatment of foreign workers in major infrastructure projects for the World Cup, on women’s rights and on LGBTQ rights. Homosexuality is illegal in the Gulf nation, and captains from some of Europe’s top countries, including Britain, France and Germany, will wear rainbow-colored armbands with the message “One love ” in an anti-discrimination campaign.

Last week, the Australian national team condemned the “suffering” of migrant workers.

“Now let’s focus on football!” FIFA President Gianni Infantino and General Secretary Fatma Samoura said in a letter to all 32 teams participating in the World Cup, confirmed by world football’s governing body to AFP.

“We know football does not exist in a vacuum and we are all aware that there are many challenges and difficulties of a political nature around the world.

“But please don’t let football get dragged into every ideological or political war that exists.”

The Qatar Organizing Committee defended the country’s rights record.

Following criticism from Australian players, a World Cup spokesman said imposing “robust” labor laws was also a “challenge” for Australia.

Earlier this week, the Arab League nations criticized Qatar as a “smear campaign” ahead of the tournament.

“One of the great strengths of the world is indeed its diversity, and if inclusion means anything, it means respecting that diversity,” FIFA’s letter said. continue.

“No people or culture or country is ‘better’ than any other.”

Qatar’s Labor Minister Ali bin Samikh Al Marri told AFP on Wednesday that calling for a new compensation fund for migrant workers was a “publicity stunt”.

He also accused some critics of the country of being “racist”.

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“They don’t want to allow a small country, an Arab country, a Muslim country, to host the World Cup,” Marri said.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and was automatically generated from the syndication feed.)

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