Football

Supporters campaign to end Qatar Airways sponsorship agreement with Bayern Munich

In protest of Qatar’s human rights violations, a group of Bayern Munich fans has called for the club’s sponsorship arrangement with Qatar Airways to be terminated at the end of the season.

In protest of Qatar’s human rights violations, a group of Bayern Munich fans has called for the club’s sponsorship arrangement with Qatar Airways to be terminated at the end of the season.

Qatar Airways, Bayern’s official airline partner, is owned by the Qatari government, which has been accused of various human rights violations, including multiple unnecessary fatalities during the 2022 World Cup preparations.

The sponsorship agreement between the two parties is slated to expire at the end of the season, and a segment of their supporters’ organisation plans to demand that it be terminated as soon as possible at Bayern’s general meeting next month.

Michael Ott, who is championing the motion, wrote: “Dear Bayern members, at the annual general meeting on November 25th, 2021, we want to oblige our association not to continue the sponsorship deal with Qatar Airways, as it is incompatible with the values ​​of our association. We call on all members to deal with the issue and to make use of their voting rights!”

“Qatar Airways is 100% owned by the Emirate of Qatar. This country stands for massive human rights violations, there are also serious allegations of corruption in sport. Instead of bringing about changes, FC Bayern is actively helping the Emirate of Qatar by sponsoring it to distract attention from the grievances.

“If FC Bayern remains silent on the situation in Qatar, our club is expressing its indifference. With this, FC Bayern is damaging its reputation and not living up to its role model.”

Asked to explain his movement, Ott said: “We want to take preventative measures to prevent a new contract.”

The Bundesliga’s 50+1 regulation ensures that fans own a majority of the club and this implies that fans do have a say in these kinds of transactions. Ott is campaigning to see all club members stand united against Qatar.

Ott added: “But FC Bayern is not a club like any other. FC Bayern has always been unique and has always been a pioneer, in every respect. We must continue to be so. Let’s not go with the flow, but set a clear example for human rights. This sets us apart once again from the bulk of Europe’s top clubs.

“We are rightly proud of the fact that we have earned our success through hard work. No other top club in Europe can claim that anymore these days! But the Qatar sponsorship brings this achievement into disrepute; we have not worked by fair means here.

“The money from such a deal is something to be ashamed of. The reputation of our club is being massively damaged. This must be corrected urgently so that we can still be proud of the achievements of our FC Bayern in the future.”

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