Qataris prevent presenter from interviewing fan in wheelchair live on air

Qataris prevent presenter from interviewing fan in wheelchair live on air

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Qatari officials have again been filmed shutting down a live TV broadcast by a fully accredited foreign crew on a street in Doha.

Argentinian TV host Joaquín “El Pollo” Alvarez was interviewing an elderly fan in a wheelchair when an official arrived and ordered the presenter to show his press card.

Mr Alvarez replies “yes, of course” before telling a colleague to take his papers out of a bag.

The official could be seen becoming furious when the Argentinian presenter tried to point a microphone at him as he spoke, pushing him away and ordering the cameraman to stop filming.

A long discussion took place during which the Argentinian crew tried to reassure the official via translators.

But he refused to let them continue the segment and ordered them to leave, telling them the area was “private”.

The fight took place in Barwa Village, a residential complex on the outskirts of the Qatari capital which was developed especially for the World Cup.

Mr Alvarez, who claimed the manager threatened to take the crew’s television equipment and detain it, said: ‘I was scared and thought they were going to take me prisoner.

Authoritarian authorities in Qatar prevent an Argentinian presenter from interviewing a fan in a wheelchair Twitter / Nosotros a la ma?ana

The TV crew tried unsuccessfully to negotiate with the man after he showed his papers

“We had a bad experience and what happened was totally unfair because we all had our permits and everything was in order.

The show’s co-presenter, Nicolas Magali, said from their studio in Buenos Aires: “This is an example of harsh censorship and we have to say it.

“They covered up the camera, wouldn’t let us film, rudely ordered you to leave and on top of that the person speaking didn’t identify themselves.”

Mr Alvarez’s wife then joked that her husband had ‘screwed himself’ in reaction to the prospect of ending up in jail, adding: ‘It’s impossible to work and enjoy a Cup of the world like this.”

Qatari officials threaten to break the camera of Danish journalists live on air

A Danish TV report was interrupted live last week by guards manhandling the crew

Security threatens to smash the live TV reporter's camera as he reports on the World Cup in QatarCredit: Twitter / Rasmus Tantholdt TV2

Global broadcasters have slammed Qatari authorities for a number of incidents involving heavy-handed guards

Argentinian broadcasters say the official, who was patrolling in a van, refused to identify himself and they still do not know whether he was employed by the government or a private security firm.

Qatar says it has trained more than 50,000 people to provide security for an expected influx of 1.2 million visitors from around the world.

The Qatari government insisted just last week that all staff had been reminded to “respect the filming permissions in place for the tournament”.

The pledge came after a Danish television crew was roughed up by a group of Qatari men who threatened to smash their equipment.

Journalist Rasmus Tantholdt was speaking on a live broadcast on a street in the Katara area when the men arrived on a golf cart and immediately stopped the broadcast without making any attempt to ask for documents.

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Mr Tantholdt, who showed his press card and insisted they had obtained permission to film there, was heard saying: ‘You invited the whole world here. Why can’t we film? It is a public place.

It later emerged that the men were private security guards and the Danes received an apology from Qatar’s International Media Bureau and the Qatar Supreme Committee, which oversees the 2022 World Cup.

In a statement to Metro.co.uk, a spokesperson for the Supreme Committee said: “Tournament organizers have since spoken to the reporter and issued a notice to all entities to adhere to filming permissions in place. for the tournament.”

Another Argentinian journalist, Dominique Metzger, was robbed live the same week.

Another incident appears to show a Brazilian journalist being harassed by officials outside a stadium after a regional flag of his country was mistaken for an LGBTQ pride flag.

And on Sunday, a British visitor claimed he was ‘attacked’ by guards as he filmed himself guarding a football outside a stadium.

Contact our press team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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