Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – The Saudi activist, Loujain Al-Hathloul, defended her opinion regarding the Argentine player, Lionel Messi, wearing a “bisht” during the 2022 World Cup, after she criticized the “racist” opinions that did not accept that, She pointed out that criticizing the practices of a particular government does not mean abandoning Arab culture.
Al-Hathloul wrote about the snapshot of Messi wearing the bisht at the coronation ceremony: “I find this honorable gesture by presenting the bisht to Messi beautiful and wonderful. As for the racist comments, it was surprising and incomprehensible to me, and it is clearly inappropriate,” she said.
One of the accounts commented on the tweet, saying: “How dare you defend the culture of oppression that caused your arrest? We defended you all until you were released, and now you are using your voice to silence others, those who are fighting for their freedom. The World Cup was built on the death of others and used For defending the values of hate against minorities, shame on you,” as the user puts it.
Al-Hathloul responded to the comment by saying: “This comment is confusing to me, and I have seen it more than once in this discussion. If I understood it correctly, should I abandon my culture to demand my rights and demand the support of others? What is the relationship between the two things?”
And the Saudi activist continued by saying: “Talking about human rights violations by a particular government does not require eliminating one’s culture. I am Arab and proud of my culture, and this does not mean blind acceptance of certain political practices and decisions.”
Al-Hathloul added, “A quick search makes you discover the importance of presenting the bisht as a gift in this region. It is a way to honor the guest, and it is not an attempt to steal the moment or hide the shirt, as some media outlets have claimed, and it does not eliminate human rights concerns,” she said.
And the presentation of the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, “The Bisht” to Messi during the presentation of the World Cup title to him at Lusail Stadium, sparked controversy and discussion about the purpose of this step, as some considered it a tribute to the Arab way, while others saw it as a way to exploit one. One of the greatest football moments in its history to deliver a specific message.