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UK bans 1,300 ‘violent and abusive’ fans from travelling to FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

England and Wales fans with banning orders must surrender their passports

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

British authorities have banned over 1,300 “violent and abusive” football fans in England and Wales from travelling to FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

Taking effect this Friday, the regulations will restrict 1,308 people with a history of football-related violence or disorder from leaving the country or traveling to nearby nations where they could commute to the games. The banned individuals have been ordered to surrender their passports from Friday.

The Home Office said those who fail to hand over their passport and attempt to travel to the tournament could face six months in prison and an unlimited fine.

Fans banned from football in England and Wales, along with any supporter who has “previously caused trouble and is deemed likely to do so again” will be prevented from travelling to the region from 10 days before the World Cup starts on 20 November until the tournament’s conclusion a week before Christmas.

UK Home Secretary Suella Braverman on the new measures:

FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

“We are all looking forward to cheering England and Wales on in Qatar and we will not let the behaviour of a minority of lawbreakers tarnish what will be an exciting tournament,” said Home Secretary Suella Braverman.

“Violence, abuse and disorder is not tolerated here, and this criminal behaviour will not be tolerated at the World Cup which is why we are taking this firm approach”.

In addition, the UK Home Office also said preventative measures were placed in previous international tournaments, with the 2018 World Cup achieving 99 percent compliance, which also required people with football banning orders to surrender their passports.

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The enforcement comes as a drastic surge in disorder and “pitch invasions” saw an approximately 60% increase in football-related arrests last season in comparison to the last full year before the Covid-19 pandemic.

British embassy officials said meetings have taken place with Dubai Police to ensure that fans staying in the UAE during the FIFA World Cup 2022 were updated with the latest safety guidance.