England football captain Harry Kane will wear an anti-discrimination armband during the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
The Football Association (FA) has joined with nine other European football federations for a season-long OneLove campaign, according to EuroSport.
Captains will wear a "OneLove" armband, which includes a design of a “heart containing colors representative of all backgrounds.”
Nine of the national sides have qualified for this winter's tournament to be held in Qatar. Same-sex relationships and the promotion of same-sex relationships are criminalized in the host nation.
“I am honored to join my fellow national team captains in supporting the important OneLove campaign,” Kane, who will wear the armband for the first time against Italy on Friday, said. “As captains we may all be competing against each other on the pitch, but we stand together against all forms of discrimination. This is even more relevant at a time when division is common in society. Wearing the armband together on behalf of our teams will send a clear message when the world is watching.”
The initiative was created by the Netherlands and they are joined by Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and Wales.
Human rights groups including Amnesty International have criticized the decision to allow Qatar to host the 2022 tournament, accusing the nation of abusing and exploiting migrant workers. The organization has called on FIFA to donate $438 million (£388 million) – the total prize money available to teams at the World Cup – to support a fund to compensate migrant workers and establish a center for them.
The FA has said that a group of migrant workers have been invited to England's training base at Al Wakrah. They will continue to push FIFA for an update on compensation. FA chief executive Mark Bullingham said: “We continue to push for the principle of compensation for the families of migrant workers who have lost their lives or have been injured in construction projects. Again, we are pushing FIFA for an update on the compensation fund which has been consistently referenced as a safety net where workers and their families have been unable to secure compensation from the construction companies.”
The FA has also requested assurances from Qatar that all fans will be welcome at the tournament, including LGBTQ+ supporters.
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