Paris Protests World Cup Matches Despite France Being The Defending Champion
Paris will boycott public screening of World Cup matches on giant screens for this season to protest human rights abuses by Qatar and the environmental impact of the FIFA matches in the desert country. Other French cities are expected to follow the move.
• Qatar has been criticized for violating the rights of migrant workers and creating air-conditioned stadiums
• There will be no giant screens in public fan zones in Paris this FIFA season as a protest against Qatar
• France is the defending champion in World Cup
Why Is Paris Boycotting Public Screening Of World Cup Matches?
Pierre Rabadan, deputy mayor of Paris in charge of sports said that there was the problem of the environmental impact. Rabadan cited air-conditioned stadiums to put force on his words. He further said that the conditions in which those facilities had been built were to be questioned as well.
Qatar Sports Investments owns the city’s football club, Paris Saint-Germain but the move won’t impact the relations between them. Rabadan said that they had very constructive relations with the club and its entourage yet it didn’t prevent them to say when they disagree.
Why Are The Allegations Of Human Rights Violations And Environmental Damage Against Qatar?
The gas-rich emirate employed 30,000 migrant workers, mostly from South Asia, for building the World Cup infrastructure including air-conditioned stadiums, metro lines, roads, and hotels worth tens of billions of dollars. It was alleged that their safety and health were compromised by the Qatar authorities. Also, the environmental impact of air-conditioned stadiums is cited as a reason to protest.
French environmental activists are supporting the move saying that the public screening of matches will consume energy that the country is storing for the winters. Authorities in the southwestern city of Bordeaux cited concerns about the energy cost associated with a public screening of World Cup matches in the winter cold. The FIFA World Cup will run from Nov 20 to Dec 19 in Qatar.