FIFA Head Says Putting 2022 World Cup in Qatar Was an "Error"

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
May 16 2014 5:16 PM

FIFA Head Says Putting 2022 World Cup in Qatar Was an "Error," but it's Still Going to Happen

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A Doha construction worker in a photo taken last week.

Warren Little/Getty Images

For the second time, FIFA president Sepp Blatter has publicly criticized the decision to hold the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, where summer temperatures are overwhelming. From al-Jazeera:

Blatter made the remarks in an interview with the Swiss television station RTS, which was broadcast on Thursday.
When asked if the decision was a mistake due to the high temperatures, he replied: "Of course, it’s an error", before adding: "You know, everyone makes mistakes in life."
Blatter added: "The technical report of Qatar indicated it was quite hot during the summer. However, the executive committee, with an overwhelming majority, decided that the games would be in Qatar."
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The average June high temperature in Qatar's capital last year was 106 degrees (authorities there have said game venues will be air-conditioned). And Blatter's remarks only addressed the weather; the wisdom of awarding the Cup to Qatar is also called into question by the country's brutal treatment of the migrant workers building stadiums and other Cup projects and its retrograde gay-rights laws. (Two men having consensual sex are subject to "lashings, a prison sentence up to seven years, and/or deportation.") Nonetheless, FIFA is not reconsidering its choice.

Ben Mathis-Lilley edits the Slatest. Follow @Slatest on Twitter.

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