SHARE
COPY LINK

CRIME

Norway’s economic police call for boycott of Qatar World Cup

The head of Norwegian police unit for economic crime Økokrim has urged the country’s national football association to boycott next year’s World Cup in Qatar.

Norway's players pose for a team photo wearing t-shirts showing a pro-human rights slogan ahead of a World Cup Qatar 2022 qualification match. The Nordic nation's senior economic crime investigator on October 28th called for a boycott of the Qatar finals.
Norway's players pose for a team photo wearing t-shirts showing a pro-human rights slogan ahead of a World Cup Qatar 2022 qualification match. Photo: SAVO PRELEVIC / AFP

The head of Økokrim – in English, the Norwegian National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime – also called for other countries to skip next year’s football tournament.

“Sport must learn that corruption has a consequence,” Pål K. Lønseth said in an interview with newspaper VG.

“Based on the viewpoint of crime prevention, it is obvious that Norway should boycott the World Cup in Qatar. The entire world of football should,” Lønseth said.

Qatar was awarded the World Cup by international governing body FIFA in 2010. A number of corruption accusations and scandals have since emerged about the process which landed the Gulf state with the prestigious event.

In Discovery documentary film The Men Who Sold The World Cup, former FIFA president Sepp Blatter conceded that the governing body did not always follow rules when awarding the tournament.

“FIFA is not corrupt. People in FIFA were corrupt,” Blatter says in the documentary.

Of the 22 officials who awarded Qatar the tournament in 2010, 16 have since been suspended, charged or given prison sentences, according to VG.

“Sport must understand that we are going to see more corruption during the awarding of events if we don’t face the consequences of existing systems not having been good enough to prevent it,” Økokrim’s leader said to the newspaper.

“This is the view of Økokrim and of myself,” he added.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

KONGSBERG ATTACK

Dane pleads guilty to killing five in knife attack in Norway

A Danish man pleaded guilty at his trial Wednesday to having stabbed five people to death and having fired arrows at others in an attack in Norway last year.

Dane pleads guilty to killing five in knife attack in Norway

Espen Andersen Brathen, a 38-year-old Dane living in Norway, allegedly used a bow and arrow inside and outside a supermarket before stabbing to death five other residents in the southeastern town of Kongsberg in October.

 Brathen entered the pleas when asked to respond to the charges of murder and attempted murder at the court in the town of Hokksund. “Everything, I admit everything,” he said, at the start of his trial.

While Norwegian police had initially suspected some kind of terror attack, they quickly believed it was the work of an unbalanced individual.

Brathen had been living for years in Kongsberg, home to about 25,000 people some 80 kilometres (50 miles) west of the capital Oslo, and authorities have said he has a medical history, although details have not been made public.

The Norwegian security services PST, which are responsible for counter-terrorism, also said the man had been on their radar.

He was arrested 35 minutes after the first reports of an attack and was swiftly moved to a medical institution.

Three experts who observed him concluded that the suspect was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia.

Both the prosecution and the defence argued that he could not be held criminally responsible and advocated a psychiatric commitment rather than a prison sentence.

According to the prosecution, Brathen was armed with a bow, 60 arrows and four knives on the day of the attacks. His victims were four women and one man aged from 52 to 78.

The trial is scheduled to last until June 17, with a verdict expected in the following weeks.

SHOW COMMENTS