Fifa World Cup 2022: Protest in bid to stop Edinburgh University students' union from screening Qatar matches

A protest is being held in a bid to force Edinburgh University’s students’ union to introduce a boycott against televising all Fifa World Cup matches.

Society body 93% Club Edinburgh is holding a protest on Sunday outside Teviot Row House starting from 3:30pm, to time with the first day of the global football tournament being held in Qatar.

The organisation wants the Edinburgh University Students’ Association (EUSA) to scrap plans to screen the World Cup matches in the Teviot Sports Bar.

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A statement posted from the group on Instagram said the demonstration was to call shame on the association’s decision to go ahead with screenings.

The Teviot Row House venue
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“We are also encouraging students to financially boycott the Students’ Association until the end of the year,” the statement said. “If you don’t agree with the decisions of management and your elected representatives, why give them your money?”

An open letter had been sent to the university’s students’ union on Monday calling on them to refuse to screen any games in their venues.

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The society is objecting to Qatar’s questionable human rights record, citing the forced labour used to construct some of the tournament’s stadia as well as legal and cultural restrictions for LGBTQ+ people in the country, with male homosexuality judged illegal.

Students’ Association president Niamh Roberts had said in a written statement the decision to continue streaming events was made to avoid the loss of about £9,000 in income that would go towards funding student services.

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“We refuse to ignore the flagrant human rights abuses committed by the state of Qatar, and will be using our screening of the World Cup as an opportunity for education and activism,” she said.

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