Middle East

Norwegian journalists arrested for assault in Qatar after reporters were detained for trespassing-Doha News

A third journalist was arrested for assaulting civilians.

A third Norwegian journalist was arrested after assaulting civilians in Doha after a top Qatari official responded to a Norwegian statement regarding a previous incident involving two other reporters.

Hubbard Melnes, known for writing important works in Qatar, arrived in Doha last week without facing problems at the border, even though authorities were aware of his arrival.

This is despite the fact that the editors of the Norwegian football magazine Josimar are very critical of the Gulf countries’ victory in hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup. This is a historic achievement, with global sporting events coming to the Middle East for the first time in its history. ..

Among the many articles written by Melnaes was an article titled “Blood, Sweat, Gold Plated PR” published in 2018.

Response to arrest Two journalists from the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation [NRK] Melnes, who was found to be invading private land in Doha last week, said: The arrests of these two NRK employees have revealed Qatar’s identity. “

Within a day or two of arriving in Doha, Melnes was detained for assaulting civilians when he left the bar of a five-star hotel.

Due to his aggressive behavior, police were contacted later that night, after which he was taken for cross-examination after an individual filed an official complaint. Police discovered that Melnes was acting under the influence of alcohol during the assault and was released within 24 hours of the withdrawal of charges against him.

Doha News contacted Melnaes, who categorically refused to comment on the issue and threatened to take legal action if the article was published instead. However, he confirmed to Doha News that he was still free to report from Qatar.

As in most countries, including Qatar, physical and verbal attacks are punished by law.

The incident occurred when Qatar’s Foreign Minister Lorwa al-Hutter expressed her disappointment in a recent Norwegian statement dealing with an incident involving two journalists.

In a virtual meeting with Norwegian Ambassador Doha Sten Arne Rossnes on Saturday, Al Hatter said all statements were unable to address “intentional infringement of private property by journalists.”

“Her Excellency emphasized that the Norwegian embassy must serve to explain to citizens visiting Qatar in order to support the rule of law,” read a statement from the Gulf countries. Ministry of Foreign Affairs [MOFA]..

Last week, journalists Harbol Ekland and Rockman Gorbani stayed in Qatar to address the one-year countdown to the 2022 FIFA World Cup and the welfare issues of migrant workers.

The two were arrested for trespassing during their stay in Qatar and released the next morning without charge.

Despite receiving what is said to be free access in the Gulf countries, including access to the newly appointed Minister of Labor, the United Nations International Labor Organization. [ILO] In an interview with Hassan Altawadi, a senior World Cup officer, NRK journalists sought to enter private land without permission.

Qatar Government Communications Bureau [GCO] He challenged a Norwegian statement alleging that the journalist was arrested for performing his duties and confirmed that the private property owner had been detained after suing police for two men who had invaded his property.

Both Ekeland and Ghorbani have extensive reports on Qatar and have traveled abroad several times for the NRK in recent years.

Norwegian boycott efforts

In June, the Norwegian parliament voted against the boycott of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, despite several campaigns against the host country in recent months.

“The federal parliament has decided that the NFF will not adopt boycotts,” the NFF confirmed to the press at the time.

This was announced after the extraordinary parliament called by the NFF. In this parliament, only 121 people agreed, while 368 representatives voted against the boycott. It was attended by an executive committee of eight members, representatives of 18 districts, and hundreds of professional and amateur clubs.

The NFF was looking for a technical committee to support this move, but the committee opposed a formal boycott.

The boycott-seeking movement is Norwegian club Tromsø IL opposed alleged human rights abuses of migrant workers in Qatar last February.

“We can no longer see people die in the name of football,” said the first division club.

“Human rights-on and off the pitch” It was a bib when the Norwegian soccer team warmed up for the first match. European qualifying for 2022 World Cup in Qatar March.

This has triggered several campaigns among European clubs such as Germany, Denmark and Sweden against the 2022 World Cup in the Gulf countries.

The Norwegian national team is not eligible for the World Cup in Qatar next year.


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