The FFF strikes back. On Friday, Amnesty International criticized the France team for failing to position themselves to support migrant workers in Qatar, the host country for the upcoming World Cup (November 20-December 18). The NGO had thus given its symbolic support to Denmark, which the French team will face on Sunday in the League of Nations. To which the French Football Federation (FFF) responded on Saturday, December 24 in a press release.
“Amnesty International is an admirable organization that we respect. Of course, it is free to support Denmark and not France.” explains the FFF, which “However, he deplores this campaign of stigmatization” of the NGO. “The FFF and the French national team are free to express themselves or not. They did not wait for the next World Cup in Qatar to defend human rights, as well as other essential causes, on a daily basis, on the field and at their level”continues the French Football Federation.
About the World Cup in Qatar, the FFF wants to be “very clear” and states that “participating does not mean turning a blind eye and endorsing”. “However, the organization of this World Cup has allowed social progress in Qatar that even some NGOs recognize, including Amnesty International”explains the body chaired by Noël Le Graët, which denotes progress “undeniable and positive” in the Gulf country, although “The reality on the ground is not perfect”.
In February 2021, an investigation by the English newspaper The Guardian He estimated at least 6,500 the number of migrant workers who died at World Cup venues. The issue of receiving homosexual persons was also raised, while homosexuality is prohibited in Qatar.
“The FFF is and will continue to be very attentive to the respect of human rights in Qatar. It has only chosen to act firmly but calmly and respectfully on the ground instead of turning it into an image campaign” argues the Federation, which claims to have implemented “several verification measures related to the respect of social rights and the application of respectful working conditions in the base camp of the France team”.
Players from the Danish, Dutch and German national teams have publicly denounced the working conditions of migrant workers in Qatar.
Why not the France team? #DANFRA
Encourage the Blues to follow suit! https://t.co/xOieD8pG5u pic.twitter.com/X8sAG0UpC5
— Amnesty International France (@amnestyfrance) September 23, 2022
indignant “the possibility of creating a reception center for immigrant workers and the creation of a compensation fund”, “together with other federations”the FFF also mentions “symbolic action to raise awareness among decision makers and public opinion”. “The French team wore a One Love bracelet for diversity against Austria and will also wear it against Denmark in support of the defense of LGBTQ+ rights” she concludes, promising “other actions to come”.