FACT CHECK: Were German World Cup Players Prohibited From Landing In Qatar Due To A Pro-Diversity Logo?

Anna Mock | Fact Check Reporter

A post shared on Facebook purports a plane carrying German World Cup players was prohibited from landing in Qatar due to pro-diversity imagery on the side of the aircraft. 

Verdict: False

The photo shows the plane Germany took to pre-World Cup training in Oman, not the World Cup in Qatar.

Fact Check: 

During a World Cup match between Portugal and Uruguay, Mario Ferri, an Italian man dubbed ‘The Falcon,’ ran onto the field with a pride flag in protest to Qatar’s anti-LGBTQ laws, Daily Mail reported. Ferri, who pulled a similar stunt in 2014, has since been banned from the World Cup and deported, New York Daily News reported.

The Facebook post purports Qatar denied entry to an airplane carrying the German soccer team. The image features of a plane decorated with text that reads “Diversity” and a mural of people of different genders and races linking arms.

“Qatar refused to permit plane carrying German players to land because of gay pictures around the plane,” the post reads. “The Germans had to return and change their Airbus. African countries have a lot learn from this when it comes to respecting our culture and what we stand for.”

This claim is incorrect. A different angle of this image can be found on Getty Images. Getty Images’ caption credits this image as the German team boarding the plane headed to a pre-World Cup training camp in Oman, not the actual event in Qatar. (RELATED: Did The 2022 World Cup Open With A Recitation From The Quran?) 

There are no credible news reports about such an incident. Likewise, no such announcement or comment on the alleged incident appears on Lufthansa’s or the German Football team’s social media accounts.

Germany has been outspoken about their views on Human Rights in Qatar. Several European countries were denied the ability to wear armbands in support of “diversity and tolerance,” New York Post reported. Germany still made a statement in support of Human Rights by posing on the field with their hands covering their mouths.

Check Your Fact has reached out to the airline, Lufthansa, for comment and will update this piece accordingly if one is received. 

Anna Mock

Fact Check Reporter