Terrorist threat looms over FIFA World Cup as Islamic State calls for ‘cleansing campaigns’: Report

Notably, the tournament kicks off with a match between hosts Qatar and Ecuador on 20 November.

Ritesh PathakAuthor

Updated - 15 November 2022 06:57 PM

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The 2022 FIFA World Cup is just a few days away and the excitement for the world’s biggest tournament is unmatchable. Fans have already started reaching Qatar as they don’t want to miss out on any action. Amid all this, a serious threat has emerged that can affect the smooth conduct of the tournament. 

The FIFA World Cup 2022 can see multiple terrorist attacks as Islamic State has called for ‘cleansing campaigns’ against the countries that belong to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. The supporters of the Islamic State are communicating about these ‘cleansing campaigns’ as they are reported to have exchanged messages like "Cleansing campaigns are ongoing. Be part of the World Cup in Qatar and score your goals. The goal is open."

According to a report in Marca, these followers want "violent and biological" acts, since they consider this a "golden opportunity" given so many enemy countries are in close proximity for a short period of time. The report further claims that it’s not the squad of these countries that will be on the target of these ‘terrorists’ but the fans will be their soft target.

“The terrorists themselves are pointing at countries like Belgium, Canada and France, although they aren't the only ones considered as potential targets. Moreover, this doesn't mean that they are referring to the squads, but rather the fans who have come to attend the tournament,” claimed the report. 

Two infographics are also being widely shared on the messaging app. While the first one shows the countries that are part of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS, while the second shows a list of the national teams that are participating in the tournament.

Ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia too, ISIS had threatened to behead star players Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Notably, the quadrennial tournament kicks off with a match between hosts Qatar and Ecuador on 20 November.

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