Saturday, April 20, 2024

Despite criticising Qatar, European should apologise next 3,000 years for what they have done in last 3,000 years, FIFA President

FIFA President Gianni Infantino accused Western countries of “hypocrisy,” saying they were not in a position to give “moral lessons” to other nations, hours before the World Cup kicks off in Qatar.

The Swiss Italian said Europe should address its past crimes before pointing fingers at Qatar.

“I’m European. “For what we Europeans have been doing around the world in the last 3,000 years, we should be apologising for the next 3,000 years before starting to give moral lessons to people”. Infantino told hundreds of reporters on Saturday.

Qatar, was awarded the right to host the global football tournament in 2010. It has received criticism for its treatment of migrant workers and human rights record.

Hypocrisy

“How many of these European or Western business companies, who earned millions and millions from Qatar and other countries in the region – billions every year – how many of them addressed the rights of migrant workers with the authorities?

“I have the answer for you. None of them,” the FIFA chief said, adding that the “one-sided moral lesson is just hypocrisy.”

LGBTQ community

“I have been speaking about this topic with the highest leadership of the country. Several times, not just once. They have confirmed, I can confirm, that everyone is welcome,” the FIFA president said.

In remarks to reporters at the end of the news conference, FIFA media chief Bryan Swanson, who is gay, insisted everyone is welcome in Qatar.

“I’ve seen a lot of criticism of Gianni Infantino since I’ve joined FIFA, in particular from the LGBTQ community,” Swanson said.

“I’m sitting here in a privileged position on a global stage as a gay man here in Qatar. We have received assurances that everybody is welcome and I believe that everybody will be welcome in this World Cup,” he added.

Drinking Banned inside Stadium

“Every decision that is taken in this World Cup, it is a joint decision between Qatar and FIFA. Every decision is discussed, debated and taken jointly. There will be, I don’t know how many, fan zones – eight, 10, big fan zones, over 200 places where you can buy alcohol,” Infantino said.

He also pointed out that this was not unusual, as drinking inside football stadiums is banned in major European nations such as France, Spain, Portugal, and Scotland.

Commercial Success

Despite some critics calling for companies to boycott the World Cup, Infantino hailed the “commercial success” of this year’s tournament.

“We sold the media rights for around $200 million more than the last World Cup,” he said. “We sold the sponsorship rights for around $200 million more than the last World Cup.”

“And as far as ticketing and hospitality rights are concerned, we are at almost 200 to 300 million more than the last World Cup.”

Qatar is ready

Infantino said the Gulf country has done impressive work in preparing for the matches.

“Doha is ready. Qatar is ready. It will be the best World Cup ever, of course,” he said.

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