A post shared on Facebook claims a “Qatari spokesperson” said displaying an LGBTQ flag at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar is punishable by up to 11 years in prison.
The claim is fabricated. It is not clear that Qatari authorities have stated that displaying LGBTQ flags during the Qatar World Cup would result in incarceration.
The 2022 FIFA World Cup is scheduled to begin in Qatar in November, according to the organization’s website. A Facebook post claims that a “Qatari spokesperson” said that displaying an LGBTQ flag at the event is punishable with anywhere from seven to 11 years of incarceration.
“Qatar spokesperson: ‘whoever lift the LGBTQ flag in the world cup, will be arrested for 7 or 11 years, we’re here in an Islamic country you should respect our religion, beliefs and culture,'” the post’s caption reads.
This claim has been made. A search of the Qatar World Cup’s official website shows no results regarding the LGBTQ flag. There is likewise no mention of such a policy on the tournament’s verified Twitter, Facebook or Instagram accounts. Check Your Fact found no credible news reports to corroborate the viral claim. (RELATED: Did FIFA Announce A Plan To Extend World Cup Matches In Qatar By 10 Minutes? )
A FIFA spokesperson told The Associated Press in 2020 that rainbow flags and shirts are welcome in the stadium. However, a security official for the tournament told the outlet in April that rainbow flags may be confiscated from fans in order to “protect them from being attacked.” Same-sex relations are criminalized in Qatar, the outlet reports.
Check Your Fact reached out to Qatar Supreme Committee and received a response. We will then update this article if we receive one.