Dua Lipa shuts down rumours she will perform at World Cup opening ceremony in Qatar

Dua Lipa performs on stage in Melbourne

Dua Lipa has shut down rumours that she will be performing at the World Cup opening ceremony in Qatar, citing the country’s record on human rights.

Rumours have been circulating about who will perform at the opening ceremony of the FIFA World Cup on Sunday 20 November.

But Dua Lipa, who is currently touring in Australia, categorically denied that she would there, writing in an Instagram story: “There is currently a lot of speculation that I will be performing at the opening ceremony of the World Cup in Qatar.

“I will not be performing, nor have I ever been involved in any negotiation to perform.

“I will be cheering England on from afar and I look forward to visiting Qatar when it has fulfilled all the human rights pledges it made when it won the right to host the World Cup.”

While many applauded the bisexual singer, others accused her of hypocrisy, citing shows she has previously performed in other countries with poor human rights records, for example the United Arab Emirates in 2019.

Under Qatar’s Penal Code 2004 queer people can be jailed for up to seven years if convicted of having sex, and under Sharia law, homosexuality is punishable with the death penalty.

There are also global concerns about forced labour and abuse of migrant workers, and this month, rights group Equidem produced two reports outlining the exploitation of workers used to construct Qatar’s World Cup stadiums and hotels.

In the report on stadium construction, workers described “efforts made by their employers to cover up or evade investigations into worker deaths, nationality-based discrimination, wage theft, illegal recruitment, forced labour, overwork, workplace violence, health and safety risks, and practices used by employers to create a captive and controllable workforce”.

A recent survey showed that a huge 62 per cent of British people of mixed ages, genders and political beliefs believe Qatar’s stance on LGBTQ+ rights should ban it from hosting the FIFA World Cup.