According to FIFA’s president, Qatar World Cup audience will number 5 billion people

Kumail Shah
FIFA president Gianni Infantino

FIFA president Gianni Infantino claimed on Monday that the 2022 World Cup in Qatar will be viewed by 5 billion people worldwide.

The 2018 World Cup in Russia drew a record-breaking 3.5 billion viewers on television.

Qatar, a small but affluent Gulf Arab state, will host the inaugural Middle East World Cup beginning in late November.

Its reigning Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, condemned assaults on Qatar by some people, “including those in positions of power,” over the event’s hosting on Monday.

“Even today, there are still people who cannot accept the idea, that an Arab Muslim country, would host a tournament, like the World Cup,”  Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani said in a speech at the World Economic Forum.

He stated that while Qatar, like other governments, is “not flawless,” it has pushed for changes and progress. Raising the minimum wage is one of the reforms, as are new laws aimed to safeguard workers from hazards like heat stress.

Human rights groups have slammed Qatar’s treatment of migrant workers, who, together with other foreigners, make up the majority of the country’s population.

High-profile soccer players, including England manager Gareth Southgate, have expressed worry over the human rights of certain fans coming to Qatar, particularly women and LGBT+ supporters.

In Qatar, homosexuality is banned. Concerns have been raised about the position of women, some of whom require permission from a male relative to marry, work in government employment, or travel abroad.

Tournament organizers emphasize that everyone is welcome in Qatar, regardless of sexual orientation or origin, while simultaneously cautioning spectators against public displays of affection.

Qatar has stated that its labor system is continuing in development and has refuted a 2021 Amnesty International assessment claiming thousands of migrant workers were being abused.

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