David Beckham responds to criticism of his ambassadorial position at Qatar World Cup


English soccer nice David Beckham has addressed criticism over his position as an envoy for Qatar in the course of the World Cup, saying it’s “positive that debate about the key issues has been stimulated directly by the first World Cup being held in the region.”

British comic Joe Lycett known as on Beckham to step down from his position fronting the event because of Qatar’s human rights file, significantly its stance on homosexuality, which is unlawful within the Gulf state, and mentioned he that he would shred £10,000 ($11,800) if he didn’t obtain a response from the soccer star.

Lycett mentioned he didn’t obtain a response from Beckham by his imposed deadline, which led to him sharing a video of himself showing to shred the money when the event kicked off on November 20 – however he later claimed he had “donated to LGBTQ+ charities” and never shredded any cash.

“We understand that there are different and strongly held views about engagement in the Middle East but see it as positive that debate about the key issues has been stimulated directly by the first World Cup being held in the region,” Beckham’s spokesperson instructed CNN by way of an announcement Friday.

“We hope that these conversations will lead to greater understanding and empathy towards all people and that progress will be achieved,” the assertion went on to say.

“David has been involved in a number of World Cups and other major international tournaments both as a player and an ambassador and he has always believed that sport has the power to be a force for good in the world. Football, the most popular sport globally, has a genuine ability to bring people together and make a real contribution to communities,” Beckham’s spokesperson added.

The event has been mired in controversy, with a lot of the build-up specializing in human rights, from the demise of migrant employees and the situations many have endured in Qatar, to LGBTQ and ladies’s rights.

A report from Human Rights Watch (HRW) revealed in October documented alleged circumstances of beatings and sexual harassment whereas in detention. In accordance with victims interviewed by Human Rights Watch, safety forces allegedly compelled transgender girls to attend conversion remedy periods at a “behavioral healthcare” middle sponsored by the federal government.

“Qatari authorities need to end impunity for violence against LGBT people. The world is watching,” mentioned Rasha Younes of Human Rights Watch.

A Qatari official instructed CNN that the HRW allegations “contain information that is categorically and unequivocally false.”

Lycett took intention at Beckham final month and mentioned in a video: “You’re the first Premiership footballer to do shoots with gay magazines like Attitude, to speak openly about your gay fans.”

“Now, it’s 2022. And you signed a reported £10 million deal with Qatar to be their ambassador during the FIFA World Cup.”

Lycett was not the primary particular person or group to criticize Beckham for his ambassadorship.

Adelaide United participant Josh Cavallo, who got here out as homosexual final yr, instructed CNN Sport he wish to see Beckham utilizing his platform to assist the LGBTQ group as a substitute of selling the Qatari authorities.

“If somebody like David Beckham along with his platform does get round us and turns into an ally that we’re wanting him to be, it’s actually useful.

“If he could take that next step and show what he means to the LGBTQ community, that would be fantastic.”

The World Cup ends on Sunday with Argentina going through defending champion France within the last in Qatar.