• Less than two months before the opening of the Football World Cup (November 20) in Qatar, many cities in France suddenly let it be known that they would not install a giant screen or a fan zone to follow the course of the Blues.

  • “Ecological nonsense”, concern to demonstrate “energy sobriety” or political will, the reasons given are various.

  • A brief overview of the cities that will shun the competition.

Less than two months before the opening of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, the sling is getting organized.

Several major cities in France suddenly announced that they would boycott the event.

Understand that there will be no giant screen erected in public squares, nor a fan zone.

And this, whatever the course of the Blues in the competition.

Last city to come out of the woods, Paris.

The announcement was made Monday evening.

"For us, there is no question of installing match broadcasting areas for several reasons", explains Pierre Rabadan, deputy in charge of sports.

The first, “the organizational conditions, both on the environmental and social aspect”, justifies the elected official.

The second, “temporality”.

The city did not imagine installing outdoor screens in the middle of December.

The reasoning is the same in Toulouse.

“Organizing outdoor broadcasts of matches for this edition scheduled for the start of winter and during the preparation for the end-of-year celebrations has always seemed to us to be of very little interest to the public, and therefore not very appropriate, raises Mayor LR Jean-Luc Moudenc.

Especially since the rental and installation of a large screen in public space represent a cost and a substantial energy expenditure that we had no intention of incurring in this period when we know the savings required.


"The boycott is a matter of personal opinion and not of the collective"

“At a time when the public authorities are asking to reduce energy consumption, such installations would cause legitimate misunderstanding,” underlines in turn Arnaud Robinet, the center-right mayor of Reims.

"In the current context, everyone must participate in the national sobriety effort", abounds Charles Diers, DVD sports assistant for the city of Angers.

On the banks of the Maine, we prefer to talk about a measure of "common sense" and "coherence" with regard to the energy bill that the installation of such a device could generate, rather than talking about a boycott.

“The boycott is a matter of personal opinion and not of the collective.

It's a personal choice, ”says Charles Diers to Ouest France.

But in Hauts-de-France, the decision is clearly more political.

“I do not endorse the organization of this competition in this country.

Football is only money and the city of Rodez will not get involved in that, ”assumes LREM mayor Christian Teyssèdre.

In Lille, “no question” either of adorning the city “in the colors of an event” that it “refuses to support”.

In 2018, the socialist mayor Martine Aubry had already refused for security reasons to install a giant screen on the Grande-Place during the final won by the France team.

This time, she decided well before the start of the competition.

"It's nonsense in terms of human rights, the environment and sport," she argues.

“Exploitation of immigrant workers”

Same speech in Strasbourg.

If the Alsatian capital had set up a fan zone from the quarter-finals in 2018, this time it will not be.

The call for a boycott is unequivocal.

“It is impossible for us not to hear the numerous alerts from NGOs denouncing the abuse and exploitation of immigrant workers”, indicated the environmental mayor Jeanne Barseghian a few days ago in an interview with France 3, referring to the 50 workers died on construction sites according to a report by the International Labor Organization (ILO).

And to add: “Strasbourg, European capital, seat of the European Court of Human Rights, cannot decently endorse this mistreatment”.

For Benoit Payan, Socialist Mayor of Marseille, the World Cup has "gradually turned into a human and environmental disaster".

Consequently, the Marseilles city also refuses to install giant screens on the Canebière.

“Strongly attached to the values ​​of sharing and solidarity in sport, committed to building a greener city, Marseille cannot contribute to the promotion of this 2022 Football World Cup in Qatar,” she said in a press release.

In Bordeaux, the environmental mayor Pierre Hurmic has never made any mystery about his position.

He himself will not watch a single match on television.

And the city won't broadcast any.

"I would really have the impression, if Bordeaux were to host these fan zones, to be complicit in this sporting event which represents all the humanitarian, ecological and sporting aberrations", he explained on Monday, specifying that the decision would have been the same if the world cup had taken place in the summer.

The responsibility of the organizers in all this?

Conversely, his counterpart Grégory Doucet has not yet positioned himself on the subject.

On Monday, Julie Nublat-Faure, assistant in charge of sports for the city of Lyon, nevertheless committed the city on her behalf.

“Lyon does not wish to relay, promote or associate itself with such an event” which it considers “scandalous on the social, ethical and ecological level” wrote the elected official on her Twitter account, before deleting her post a few minutes later.

Asked about this by 20 Minutes, the town hall of Lyon has still not responded.

Just like that of Nice which does not wish to raise the subject for the moment.

Finally, if Nancy (PS) points out the "lag" of the use of air-conditioned stadiums in Qatar, she is the only one to underline a crucial point and to denounce the responsibility of the organizers of the event.

“We should seriously review the rules for awarding World Cups in order to integrate the issues of sobriety and respect for human rights,” she advises.

The message is transmitted.


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