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SPD leader Lars Klingbeil will not go to the World Cup in Qatar

After the Winter Olympics in Beijing, SPD chairman Lars Klingbeil will not be attending the 2022 World Cup in Qatar either.

“Nevertheless, it’s a difficult balancing act in both cases,” said Klingbeil in an interview with the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung”. He thinks the decision to “award these two major sporting events to Qatar and China is fundamentally wrong. But now that they are taking place there, you have to make sure that you send the appropriate messages.”

With a view to the World Cup finals from November 21 to December 18, that means: “We have to address the situation of women there, including the working conditions around the World Cup,” said Klingbeil. “If the events take place there, we have to point out these abuses in order to increase the pressure on the governments.”

He expects attitude from the German Football Association (DFB), said the 43-year-old. “The DFB is a political player” and cannot “just go to Qatar to play football there”.

The 2022 World Cup was awarded to Qatar in 2010. The organizer has been criticized for years because of the human rights situation and following reports of thousands of dead workers on construction sites in the emirate. The government of Qatar rejects this and refers to a number of reforms.

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