Watch: FIFA presenter asked by Qatari police to remove OneLove band live on air
FIFA World Cup 2022: In a video shared on social media, the officer can be seen informing the journalist that he must take off the armband.
A Danish journalist was told by the Qatari police to remove a OneLove armband while filming a World Cup segment in Doha. Jon Pagh, from Danish station TV 2 Sport, was filming outside the Denmark squad’s hotel when he was stopped by local police.
In a video shared on social media, the officer can be seen informing the journalist that he must take off the armband, which has been controversial during the FIFA World Cup 2022 as homosexuality is illegal in Qatar.
Jon Pagh refused to take it off, saying, "I respect that you are telling me that, but I can't take it off. Why is it not allowed? Is it because of the colours?"
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The policeman said “yeah” before reacting by pushing away the camera. "It is just one love,” Jon Pagh protested.
“It is just respecting everybody."
The Danish journalist later said, “I think that when we are down here, we must be careful about doing activism, and we must be especially careful about provoking situations, but it was not at all in my mind that it would provoke anything."
“I myself am also very careful not to do activism, but it is the same political message that is in FIFA's rules and human rights," he added.
“For me it is not politics. It's human rights. It is an article of clothing which I wear and which in the Western world and according to all human rights I am allowed to wear. I really hope that no one takes this as an attempt to provoke anything. We are standing in the middle of the dark, 30 kilometres out in the desert. I didn't think for a second that this could be a problem," he told local media.
Captains of England, Wales, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany and Denmark were set to wear the OneLove armbands at the World Cup, in a show of support of the LGBTQ+ community. But they announced in a joint statement on Monday that the idea had been dropped.