Last month, Qatar had ties with six Arab counties cut because they considered the Gulf state a base of terrorism. Now those six countries have requested in writing to FIFA, the world soccer’s governing body, demanding they strip Qatar of their hosting of the 2022 World Cup.
Gianni Infantino, the FIFA president, stated that Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Mauritania, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates had written to FIFA asking for Qatar to be removed under Article 85 for the FIFA Code as host nation, which would allow for the soccer governing body to do so in the case of an emergency.
Reuters reported that the countries, in the request to FIFA, warned of potential threats to fans and players, security, and the entire tournament, being surrounded by what they call the base and the castle of terrorism. The countries have also threatened to boycott the 2020 FIFA World Cup if the governing body does not act upon their request.
FIFA has not responded to requests that they confirm they received the letter. According to a source close to Qatar’s officials, the Gulf state also have not received a copy of the letter sent to FIFA.
Representatives of the Saudi government in the United States, have not commented at this time about the letter. Previously, nations and soccer fans around the would have requested that either games be moved to December to the impact of the heat in Qatar. The United States was even ready to step up as an alternative host, should Qatar be stripped because of the desert state’s harsh climate.
Commentary by Cletus Dillwood