Coach Tite avoided commenting on the human rights violations that occur in Qatar and have been the subject of constant discussion since the country was announced as host of the World Cup.
In an interview after the 2-0 victory against Serbia, this Thursday (24th), the commander of the Brazilian team said that he fights so that “there is no discrimination” but that his area is sport. He also stated that his desire is to be an example of inspiration for younger people.
“Without alienation, they are choices,” he said.
Football and politics shared the spotlight in the first days of the World Cup, with protests from some teams.
Among them is Germany. In an official photo before the defeat against Japan, the players covered their own mouths, in reaction to FIFA’s ban on the use of armbands with the expression “One love”, in support of the LGBTQIA+ community.
Players from England and Iran also made gestures ahead of their opening matches. The Brazilian athletes, however, kept their distance from the theme this Thursday.
International organizations denounced the death of thousands of migrant workers who were dedicated to building the event’s infrastructure. They also lacked access to food, medical care, labor justice, unions and paid housing.
The regime even started labor reforms in 2017 that would guarantee better conditions for workers, but international organizations continue to demand that the government reaffirm its commitment and follow through with the changes after the tournament.
The country is also questioned because of its laws against the LGBT+ community. In the country, being homosexual is a crime punishable by death. Two months before the start of the World Cup, Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani said gay fans from around the world were welcome “without discrimination” in the country, in a bid to allay fears of activists.
A month later, Human Rights Watch issued a statement claiming that Qatari security forces arbitrarily arrested gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in the same period that the emir assured the world of the community’s safety.
Shortly before the start of the Cup, former Qatar national team player and event ambassador Khalid Salman called homosexuality “mental damage”.
Women’s rights were another point of tension for the Qatari regime. In the country, they must wear clothes that are above the knee and must not show their shoulders.
They are also subject to the guardianship of men —usually father, brothers, uncles and grandfathers— and need their authorization to study abroad with government grants, get married and receive some reproductive treatments, according to Amnesty International.