Qatar says Israeli fans welcome in World Cup 2022 should Israel qualify


Secretary General of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy Hassan al-Thawadi told the New York Times that should Israel qualify for World Cup 2022, the team and its fans would be welcome in Qatar.

“Everyone is welcome. It’s a simple answer: everybody is welcome,” he told the NYT.

Thawadi made these statements after Qatar backed down on some matters in the region, such as supporting the Hamas Movement in Gaza, as according to Asia Times, Doha has worked to show it is close to Israel to gain Western countries’ amiability.

During his visit to New York, Qatar’s emir sought to meet with leaders of the Jewish community there. While addressing the UN General Assembly, he did not mention “Palestine” like he usually does, observers have noted. When Hamas elected Yahya Sanwar as its chief in the Gaza Strip, the movement shifted towards considering dialogue with Fatah and the Palestinian Authority and has distanced itself from Qatar.

The emir also did not mention Syria, according to Asia Times, although Doha has been accused by neighboring Arab states of having strong ties with groups affiliated to al-Qaeda.