Sporting Events

In the next two years, the world will experience a mega-sporting event season like no other, with two Olympics, two World Cups, and a host of other competitions that have the potential to either elevate or trample internationally recognized human rights.

Explore our latest research and analysis on the world’s biggest sporting events and the athletes, fans, and communities impacted by them.

FIFA: First Week of World Cup Proves Worst Fears

Urgent Action Required from FIFA to Change Course and Show its Human Rights Commitments are Still in Force (Nyon, Switzerland, 25 November, 2022) — Multiple human rights abuses taking place in the first week of the 2022 FIFA Qatar Men’s World Cup reveal significant backsliding within FIFA on human rights, the Sport & Rights Alliance […]

Qatar: Rights Abuses Stain FIFA World Cup

‘Reporters’ Guide’ Highlights Key Labor Rights Issues, Needed Reforms  (Beirut, November 14, 2022) – The FIFA World Cup from November 20 to December 18, 2022, will be played following years of serious migrant labor and human rights abuses in Qatar, Human Rights Watch said today, publishing a “Reporters’ Guide” to support journalists covering the Qatar World […]

Qatar and LGBTQ Human Rights: An Overview Ahead of the World Cup

The human rights of LGBTQ people have been at the centre of the debate over the upcoming Men’s World Cup in Qatar in recent weeks. The mere fact that the sporting event was going to be organised in a country with laws criminalising people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions (SOGIE) has contributed […]

CPJ Safety Advisory: Covering the 2022 World Cup

The 2022 FIFA World Cup takes place in Qatar from November 20 to December 18, the first World Cup to be held in the Arab world, and said to be the biggest sporting event held in the Middle East. Journalists working in the small nation bordering Saudi Arabia have faced digital security threats, legal issues, and […]

Qatar: Security Forces Arrest, Abuse LGBT People

Discrimination, Ill-Treatment in Detention, Privacy Violations, Conversion Practices (Beirut) – Qatar Preventive Security Department forces have arbitrarily arrested lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people and subjected them to ill-treatment in detention, Human Rights Watch said today. LGBT people interviewed said that their mistreatment took place as recently as September 2022, as Qatar prepared to host the 2022 […]

Qatar: Global survey shows overwhelming demand for FIFA to compensate World Cup migrant workers

Almost three-quarters (73%) polled across 15 countries support proposal that FIFA use World Cup revenues to compensate workers who suffered in the preparation of the tournament   More than two-thirds (67%) want their national Football Associations to speak out publicly about the human rights issues associated with the 2022 Qatar World Cup  FIFA should establish […]