World Cup 2022: What are the laws in Qatar on alcohol, LGBTQ and clothing?

With just 48 hours to go before the World Cup kicks off in Qatar, Fifa has announced it will ban the sale of alcohol in stadiums after intense pressure from the kingdom’s powerful royal family.

More than a million and a half football fans from around the world will flock to the Gulf state to witness the sport’s greatest competition.

But the 11-hour intervention by the strict Muslim nation’s rulers will come as a blow to players hoping to enjoy the sporting spectacle.

Fifa-confirmed alcohol sales will now be restricted to special ‘fan zones’, where pints are expected to cost a whopping £12 and will only be available at certain times – with each person limited to four.

It’s the latest controversy plaguing this year’s World Cup and a new demonstration of the strict rules fans should follow, as boozing, swearing and sex potentially put tourists at risk of being jailed, flogged or worse.

What alcohol laws are there?

Football fans are warned not to get drunk if they've flown to Qatar to watch the World Cup. Pictured: Fans celebrate with beers during the Euro 2020 final between Italy and England in July 2021

Football fans are warned not to get drunk if they've flown to Qatar to watch the World Cup. Pictured: Fans celebrate with beers during the Euro 2020 final between Italy and England in July 2021

Football fans are warned not to get drunk if they’ve flown to Qatar to watch the World Cup. Pictured: Fans celebrate with beers during the Euro 2020 final between Italy and England in July 2021

Football fans found drunk on the street could be jailed or heavily fined.

Drinking alcohol in public places is banned under the country’s strict rules and could see those caught being jailed for six months.

Other punishments imposed on people caught drinking alcohol were public floggings.

However, security bosses in Qatar are understood to be more relaxed about this year’s tournament as police are reportedly expected to turn a blind eye to most offences. But those fans who are caught getting into fights or vandalizing property should expect to be punished.

Supporters are urged to avoid purchasing duty-free alcohol as alcohol is illegal to import. And anyone caught bringing it into the country will be confiscated and face jail time.

Fans can buy alcohol in hotels and designated

Fans can buy alcohol in hotels and designated

Fans can buy alcohol in hotels and designated “fan zones”, but drinking on the streets is prohibited. Pictured: Football fans await the arrival of England players at their hotel in Al Wakra on Tuesday

Alcohol is normally only served in licensed hotel restaurants and bars in Qatar. It is illegal to consume it elsewhere.

However, non-Muslim residents of Doha who have a liquor license can drink at home.

The World Cup will allow players to purchase beer from designated “fan zones” in downtown Doha. But there will be a limit to when people can buy alcohol — and a limit to how much they can buy.

Similar to America, the legal drinking age in Qatar is 21, and bouncers in bars often ask for photo ID or passports for people to enter.

What are the LGBTQ+ laws in Qatar?

LGBT fans are urged to respect Qatar's strict anti-homosexuality rules. A person is pictured holding a rainbow flag at an LGBTQ rally in Buenos Aires, Argentina on November 5

LGBT fans are urged to respect Qatar's strict anti-homosexuality rules. A person is pictured holding a rainbow flag at an LGBTQ rally in Buenos Aires, Argentina on November 5

LGBT fans are urged to respect Qatar’s strict anti-homosexuality rules. A person is pictured holding a rainbow flag at an LGBTQ rally in Buenos Aires, Argentina on November 5

Same-sex relationships are banned in Qatar, and homosexual acts are considered “immoral” under Sharia law.

Penalties can include fines and imprisonment for up to seven years. However, death sentences can also be imposed.

Article 285 of the national penal code also criminalizes “guiding, inciting or seducing a man to commit sodomy” and “enticing or seducing a man or woman to commit illegal or immoral acts”.

World Cup organizers have insisted that everyone – regardless of sexual orientation – is welcome in Qatar “without fear of any consequences”.

But earlier this month, a World Cup “ambassador” in Qatar came under fire for claiming homosexuality is “damaging to the spirit”.

In an interview filmed in Doha, former Qatar international Khalid Salman raised the issue of homosexuality, which is illegal in the conservative Muslim country.

“(Homosexuality) is haram. Do you know what haram (forbidden) means?’ Said Salman in an interview.

When asked why it is haram, Salman said, “I’m not a strict Muslim, but why is it haram? Because it’s damage in the spirit.’

However, gay couples can openly hold hands, cuddle and kiss at the World Cup in Qatar, although public displays of affection are banned by the Arab state, it has been claimed.

FIFA has held secret meetings with Qatar’s Interior Ministry, convincing it to stop officials from its Preventive Security Department from arresting gay fans at the World Cup.

Meanwhile, traditional symbols representing the LBGTQ+ community – including rainbow flags – could be confiscated to protect fans from being attacked for standing up for gay rights.

What laws apply to clothing and apparel?

The country has a strict dress code, with Qatari women expected to wear the traditional abaya, a long dark robe that covers the whole body. A woman is pictured wearing an abaya in the Qatari capital Doha on Friday

The country has a strict dress code, with Qatari women expected to wear the traditional abaya, a long dark robe that covers the whole body. A woman is pictured wearing an abaya in the Qatari capital Doha on Friday

The country has a strict dress code, with Qatari women expected to wear the traditional abaya, a long dark robe that covers the whole body. A woman is pictured wearing an abaya in the Qatari capital Doha on Friday

Visitors to Qatar are encouraged to dress modestly, with the country’s tourism website saying men and women should “show respect for the local culture by avoiding displaying overly revealing clothing in public”.

Visitors are asked to cover their shoulders and knees, though those caught in shorts or sleeveless tops may be turned away from government buildings, markets and major shopping complexes.

In public, Qatari women are expected to wear the abaya, a long dark robe that covers the whole body.

However, foreign visitors are not required to wear this or cover their hair. But they are expected to cover their shoulders and wear skits or dresses that fall below the knee.

It’s a different story in hotels, where bikinis are often worn around the pool.

Earlier this week, Virgin Atlantic staff flying the England team to Qatar were told not to wear gender-neutral uniforms, but instead dress in more traditional cabin crew outfits.

What tips does the Ministry of the Interior give traveling fans?

The Interior Ministry has urged fans to respect Qatar's laws and customs. Pictured: England fans in Doha, Qatar on November 11th

The Interior Ministry has urged fans to respect Qatar's laws and customs. Pictured: England fans in Doha, Qatar on November 11th

The Interior Ministry has urged fans to respect Qatar’s laws and customs. Pictured: England fans in Doha, Qatar on November 11th

The government urges football fans to pay close attention to Qatari laws and respect the country’s customs.

Fans traveling to the country are urged to ensure their actions do not “offend” anyone as there “could be serious penalties for something that may not be illegal in the UK” such as importing pork, alcohol or anything potential pornographic.

Visitors should not engage in drug use while in Qatar and face “severe penalties for possession of even leftover amounts”.

“There is zero tolerance for drugs in Qatar,” the UK government said on its website. “Penalties for using, trafficking, smuggling and possession of drugs can include lengthy prison terms, heavy fines and deportation.”

On sexuality, the government said that private life is “widely respected” in Qatar, but any display of public intimacy “may be considered offensive, regardless of gender, sexual orientation or intent”.

A full list of advice can be found on the government website here.

What items am I not allowed to bring to the World Cup in Qatar?

Items that people are not allowed to bring into Qatar include electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes). Pictured is a woman vaping on an e-cigarette in Birmingham

Items that people are not allowed to bring into Qatar include electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes). Pictured is a woman vaping on an e-cigarette in Birmingham

Items that people are not allowed to bring into Qatar include electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes). Pictured is a woman vaping on an e-cigarette in Birmingham

Importing pornography and sex toys, pork products and religious books into Qatar is also illegal, with all baggage scanned in the arrivals hall of Hamad International Airport and contraband goods confiscated.

All over-the-counter medications, such as codeine, must come with a prescription slip or are take-out.

Those caught with smuggled narcotics can face hefty fines and lengthy prison terms.

Qatar law also prohibits the importation, sale and purchase of electronic cigarettes, liquids and other similar products.

Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk

https://www.soundhealthandlastingwealth.com/health-news/world-cup-2022-what-are-the-laws-in-qatar-on-alcohol-lgbtq-and-what-to-wear/ World Cup 2022: What are the laws in Qatar on alcohol, LGBTQ and clothing?

Brian Ashcraft

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