According to an investigation, some hotels hosting the World Cup in Qatar have refused to allow same-sex couples to stay and others have asked guests to avoid public displays of affection.
Homosexuality is illegal in Qatar – but FIFA and Qatari authorities have previously insisted that everyone is welcome at this year’s tournament.
However, a group of Norwegian, Swedish and Danish reporters said they had contacted 69 hotels on FIFA’s official list of recommended accommodation – posing as a newlywed gay couple – and discovered three hotels refusing to take reservations.
Another 20 hotels said they would accept them as long as they didn’t openly show they were gay.
As reported by Norwegian Broadcaster NRK, Sweden’s SVT and Denmark’s DR, 38 hotels have no problems and are happy to book rooms for same-sex couples.
“FIFA is confident that all necessary measures will be taken for LGBT+ supporters so that they, as well as others, can feel welcome and safe during the championship period.” , world football’s governing body told reporters during their investigation.
It added that it made the findings of Qatar’s Supreme Commission on Delivery & Heritage (SC) at the World Cup aware of the findings.
The committee said Qatar was a “conservative country” but was “committed to providing a comprehensive, welcoming, safe and accessible FIFA World Cup experience for all”.
However, it added that it would take action against hotels that did not comply.
A spokesman for the committee told Reuters news agency: “More than 100 hotels in Qatar that can accommodate visiting football fans, players, officials and other core stakeholders, will be required. compliance with the Sustainable Sourcing Code”.
“As a result, hotel operators that adhere to the Sustainable Sourcing Code are then monitored and evaluated.
“SC treats any violation of this rule or case of discrimination with the utmost seriousness.
“We welcome further information on these allegations to ensure any partners involved in the FIFA World Cup are not up to the standard expected.”
England manager Gareth Southgate had previously voiced his concerns, in March saying he was unhappy some fans would not feel safe going to the event due to concerns about human rights issues in this country.
The same month, FIFA president Gianni Infantino told the AP news agency: “Everybody will find that everyone here is welcome in Qatar, even if we talk about LGBTQ+.”
The World Cup in Qatar will take place from November 21 to December 18.