French President Emmanuel Macron has waded into the controversy around Qatar’s hosting of the World Cup, insisting sport should not be politicised.
“I think we must not politicise sport,” said Macron, whose national team is currently the defending Champion of the World Cup won in 2018.
The 2022 World Cup, which kicks off on Sunday, has been dragged by controversy, including over Qatar’s alleged human rights abuses, suppression of dissent, mistreatment of foreign workers, and persecution of LGBTQ people.
“These questions must be addressed when hosting the event is decided,” he told reporters in Bangkok, where he is attending a summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum.
Macron, who will be going to Qatar if France reaches the semi-finals, said it was “a very bad idea to politicise sport”, noting that France will host the Olympic Games in 2024.
The French national team will begin their defense of the World Cup trophy against Australia on Tuesday before also playing Denmark and Tunisia in Group D.