November 17, 2022 Special Dispatch No. 10321

Ahead Of World Cup, Homophobic Cartoons In Qatari State Dailies

November 17, 2022
Qatar | Special Dispatch No. 10321

Ahead of the 2022 World Cup, homophobic content has continued to appear in the Qatari media, including in the form of cartoons. Over the last year, the Qatari press has published many cartoons that disparage the LGBTQ community, express apprehension about gay fans visiting Qatar for the games, and stress the need to protect Qatar from pro-LGBTQ attitudes.

These cartoons match the general anti-gay attitude prevalent in Qatar.[1] It should be noted that this discourse is at odds with the joint commitments made by FIFA and Qatar in January 2020, which include a commitment to avoid any form of discrimination against World Cip participants and attendees on account of race, skin color, gender, sexual orientation, etc.[2] Various Qatari spokespersons, chief of them the Emir Tamim Bin Hamad Aal Thani, stress that, although Qatar will welcome all visitors, it expects them to respect its culture and conservative values.[3]

This report presents homophobic cartoons published in the Qatari press over the last year.

Qatar Opposes Gay Community

La'eeb, the 2022 World Cup mascot, shatters the rainbow colors (Al-Sharq, Qatar, April 14, 2022)

Qatar and the rainbow flag (Al-Sharq, Qatar, May 21, 2022)

British activist Peter Tatchell, who protested violations of LGBTQ rights in Qatar, is not wanted in the country (Al-Sharq, Qatar, October 30, 2022)[4]

Homosexuality Is Dangerous And Unnatural

"Crush them… or they will bite you" (
Al-Sharq, Qatar, December 3, 2021)

The World Cup as a Trojan horse which conceals "cultures at odds with the values of [Qatari] society" (
Al-Watan, Qatar, October 29, 2022)

Gays go against the current of "healthy human nature" (
Al-Sharq, Qatar, September 18, 2022)

Cartoons Presenting Offensive Stereotypes Of Gays

Gay person cannot decide which bathroom to use (
Al-Sharq, Qatar, July 26, 2022)

FIFA president Gianni Infantino, addressing the teams participating in the World Cup (represented by gay stereotypes), tells them, "Let's focus on football." (
Al-Watan, Qatar, November 5, 2022)

Qatar Will Preserve Its Values During The World Cup

Qatar wants an "ideal" World Cup, while the LGBTQ community wants a "gay" World Cup (
Al-Sharq, Qatar, October 27, 2022)

"We will host the World Cup while preserving our roots" (
Al-Watan, Qatar, November 6, 2022)



[1] See MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 10040 - Ahead Of FIFA World Cup In Qatar, Homophobic Incitement In Country Continues – June 27, 2022.

[2], January 21, 2020.

[3] See e.g., statements by the Emir in a press conference in Germany (, May 23, 2022).

[4] On October 25, 2022, British gay rights activist Peter Tatchell staged a one-man protest in front of Qatar's national museum, standing with a shirt saying "Qatar anti-gay" and holding a sign protesting the arrest of gays in Qatar and the use of conversion therapy., October 25, 2022; Al-Arab (London), October 26, 2022.

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