The journalists were released after thirty-two hours, but such an arrest is “unacceptable”, agree media and politicians. For the Scandinavian kingdom, this incident bodes badly before the next FIFA World Cup will be held in the emirate in a year.
Polite but firm arrest, detention without legal basis and confiscation of the camera and cell phones. The misadventure experienced by two journalists from Norwegian public broadcaster NRK in Qatar, where they were investigating preparations for the World Cup, aroused discontent and concern in Oslo. “An attack on the freedom to inform”, headline the most read of the Norwegian daily newspapers, the tabloid World Gang (VG).
“It is paradoxical that Qatar is home to a media like Al-Jazeera, which often provokes authoritarian regimes in the Middle East with its critical journalism ”, he estimates, continuing:
But at home, criticism of the local regime and political opposition are not tolerated. Although Qatar has initiated reforms, it remains an absolute monarchy. ”
The importance of protecting journalists
The arrest took place on the evening of Sunday, November 21, as reporters Halvor Ekeland Lokman Ghorbani returned to the hotel after interviewing Qatari 2022 World Cup boss Hassan Al-Thawadi. Not hearing from them on Monday, the NRK sounded the alarm. Soon after, the Qatari ambassador in Oslo was