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bitchy | Prince William criticized by activists after claiming to be ‘too busy’ to go to Qatar


Last week, we heard that Prince William will be “too busy” to attend the upcoming World Cup in Qatar. The FIFA World Cup starts on November 20 (group stages) and the final will be held on December 18. There are huge human rights concerns around Qatar’s hosting of the World Cup – the government used and abused migrants to build all of the stadiums and hotels, and Qatar has a number of anti-LGBTQ laws, meaning gay football fans are being told to stay away from the World Cup. Given the human rights abuses and anti-LGBTQ issues, one would think it would be pretty easy for Football Association President Peggington to make a solid excuse as to why he will not attend the games. He did not – his office has let it be known that William will be “too busy” to attend the games. The only thing he has scheduled for that four-week period is the trip to Boston for Earthshot. Otherwise, the dude is free as a bird. So, even activists are calling out the lazy Peg, especially since William’s office has backtracked and said it’s possible he’ll attend the World Cup if England makes it to the final.

Prince William ’s indecision over whether he will snub the Qatar World Cup due to diary clashes has been branded “implausible” by human rights campaigners. The Prince of Wales currently has “no plans” to travel to the Middle East in time for England’s opening game against Iran on November 21.

But royal sources today confirmed the heir, who is President of the Football Association, could try and clear his diary to make the trip if the England team reach the final on December 18. The controversial hosts have been hit with protests over its poor working conditions for stadium workers during the build-up to the competition, as well as same-sex relationships being illegal there. Sources close to William, 40, have blamed a busy diary during the World Cup for him not attending.

Leading activist Peter Tatchell, who was stopped by police in Qatar this week while holding a solo protest on the country’s abysmal human rights record and treatment of LGBTQ+ citizens, questioned William’s excuses over his busy schedule.

He said: “The suggested excuse that Prince William’s decision is because of a diary clash is implausible, given that the dates of the WC have been well known for over a year. This is a human rights issue, not a political one, so the Prince is entirely justified, morally and constitutionally, to speak out.”

A Kensington Palace spokesperson said the prince could not make the journey “due to the busy winter schedule”, but insisted the heir would “explore” options to travel should England end up in the final as part of a government delegation.

[From The Daily Mirror]

I understand the argument being made to William, where his Tory advisors are telling him that he can’t be “political” at all, meaning he can’t explicitly refuse to attend the World Cup because of human rights concerns. But that brings up several other issues. One, it’s not political to say: LGBTQ people should not be criminalized. It’s not political to say: it’s extremely problematic that the government of Qatar used slave labor to build the stadiums. That fact that William thinks he can side-step those “political statements” by merely claiming to have a booked schedule shows William’s lack of leadership and lack of political sensitivity. It will also look f–king awful if, after all of that, England makes it to the semifinals or finals and William isn’t there OR if he does show up. This is a delicate diplomatic situation and instead of coming into it with some nuance and sensitivity, William’s Tory advisors have carefully positioned him to be screwed no matter what.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Instar.


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