Tyson Fury urged to highlight Saudi Arabia’s “worrying” human rights record

Tyson Fury has been urged to use his platform to highlight Saudi Arabia’s “disturbing” human rights record after claiming the Middle Eastern country will host all major sporting events within the next decade.

Fury will fight former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou in Riyadh on October 28 in a boxing match described by his Queensberry and Top Rank promoters as a “historic event”, although his WBC belt is not at stake.

It won’t be the first time Fury has been the star attraction in Saudi Arabia, having taken part in a wrestling competition with Braun Strowman at the King Fahd International Stadium four years ago, but he will now follow in Anthony Joshua’s footsteps and boxing a country with a poor human rights record.

Tyson Fury should take the time to investigate Saudi Arabia’s troubling human rights record and use his platform to draw attention to the plight of people like Salma al-Shehab and Mohammad bin Nasser al-Ghamdi.

Sacha Deshmukh, Chief Executive of Amnesty UK

Joshua was criticized by human rights group Amnesty International before his clash with Andy Ruiz Jr in 2019 in Diriyah, just outside Riyadh, and before his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk in Jeddah last year.

Amnesty has now turned its focus to Fury, who predicted Saudi Arabia would become the “powerhouse of all sports” at the opening press conference for his fight against Ngannou on Thursday, while frequently thanking Saudi adviser Turki Alalshikh for organizing the event in Riyadh became.

Fury said: “I already fought for the WWE crown jewel in the 2019 Riyadh season and I knocked out the Monster Among Men Braun Strowman and I’m going to take out another big dosser here with him (Ngannou).”

“It is a very special occasion for me and a special time in sport when a powerhouse like Saudi Arabia is taking over the game.

“They take over football and boxing. I think in five to 10 years they will be the powerhouse of all sports. All major sporting events will take place somewhere in Saudi Arabia.”

The Riyadh season, which has run from October to March since 2019 and hosts several major entertainment events in the city, was mentioned repeatedly during Thursday’s press conference in London, but there was no mention of homosexuality being illegal in Saudi Arabia. The accusations that the state is exposed to because it severely restricts women’s rights are still punishable with the death penalty.

Sacha Deshmukh, chief executive of Amnesty International UK, said in a statement to the PA news agency: “Saudi Arabia’s efforts to become a sporting ‘powerhouse’ are part of a major sports laundering operation by Saudi authorities who want to rebrand the country.” To divert attention from the country’s appalling human rights record.

“While Saudi Arabia is shoveling money into high-profile sports projects, it is cracking down on human rights at home: peaceful activists have been jailed, a staggering 196 people were executed last year alone, and the gruesome murder of Jamal Khashoggi is still an issue.” a government cover-up.

“Just last week we received news that retired teacher Mohammad bin Nasser al-Ghamdi was sentenced to death by a Saudi court for his comments on Twitter and YouTube, and meanwhile Leeds University PhD student Salma al-Shehab is serving time , a 27-year prison sentence. sentenced to a year in prison for tweeting that she supported Saudi women’s rights activists.

“We already said during Anthony Joshua’s Saudi fight against Andy Ruiz that sports stars must understand the dynamics of sports laundering and be prepared to counteract it by speaking out about human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia.

“Tyson Fury should take the time to investigate Saudi Arabia’s troubling human rights record and use his platform to draw attention to the plight of people like Salma al-Shehab and Mohammad bin Nasser al-Ghamdi.”

Have any Question or Comment?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *