Morgan Freeman criticised over opening Qatar World Cup ceremony
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Morgan Freeman has been criticized for taking part in the opening ceremony in Qatar for the 2022 World Cup.
The Shawshank Redemption actor, who was an ambassador for the United State’s bid to host the 2022 World Cup before losing hosting rights to Qatar, stunned fans by joining the stage with Qatari YouTube star Ghanim al-Muftah. Take a look below:
The YouTube star, who suffers from Caudal Regression Syndrome, proceeded to read from the Quran while the actor walked on stage.
During their appearance, in a recorded dialogue, the actor asked al-Muftah if he was allowed to attend the World Cup.
To which al-Muftah responded: “We were raised to believe that we were scattered on this earth as nations, as tribes, so we could learn from each other and find beauty in the differences.”
The local star added that the world could live together ‘under one big home’ if we have ‘tolerance and respect’.
During his segment, Freeman said: “We gather here as one big tribe and Earth is the tent we all live in.”
The two then reached their hands together, with the images of fireworks projected behind them.
Unfortunately, Freeman's message of peace and equality didn't go down too well with viewers, with one spectator writing on Twitter: “For a man who played Nelson Mandela – who knew better than anyone the impact and importance of isolation on a country and its success on the ground to change that nation’s policy – it is so disappointing to see #MorganFreeman take the money and support an oppressive regime.”
Another disappointed Twitter user said: “Super disappointed in JK and Morgan Freeman. I guess money is worth more than human rights and morals.”
While a third person wrote: “I'm so disappointed in Morgan Freeman.”
A fourth later shared: “Am I the only one who is extremely disappointed in Morgan Freeman for introducing the World Cup in a country where human rights just don't exist? Just lost a lot of respect for him.”
A fifth Twitter user wrote: “Morgan Freeman at Qatar football? Shocked and disappointed. How could he show support for that.... Well, I guess it's true, some folks can never have enough money.”
This year’s World Cup has already been met with controversy due to concerns over human rights abuses and concerns over homophobia in its host country, Qatar.
UNILAD has contacted Freeman's reps for comment.