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Dutch journalist harassed by police in Qatar forced to delete photos

A presenter and photojournalist for Dutch news website was stopped by police at the World Cup stadium in Qatar on Friday. The videos and images he created showed security guards and police officers. Bas Scharwachter was spending time outside the Al Thumama stadium where the Dutch men’s national team will face Senegal on Monday. He took to Twitter to post pictures of migrant workers hired as security guards sitting in the “sweltering heat” on the artificial turf outside the stadium, and in full uniform waiting near the stadium’s entrance. Posted a photo of a long line of police officers.

Soon after, he tweeted, “First incident with Qatar police is real. I had to delete all photos of nice guards from my phone and camera. I even had to move it to the “deleted” folder for it. ” After that, he was allowed to continue his work. Scharwachter’s camera still has video images.

Gert-Jaap Hoekman, editor-in-chief of the news agency, confirmed the story. “Scharwachter was creating atmospheric images at the stadium because he wanted to know how the preparations for Monday’s match were going. I’m familiar with the restrictions there, but I don’t see why these images shouldn’t be allowed to be taken,” he said.

Hoekman doesn’t yet know if he will take any action to escalate the issue. “It says something about how journalists have to work there. That’s what worries me.”

The NVJ, the Dutch union of journalists, said the order to remove the images was unacceptable. “I am not convinced that FIFA’s efforts have led to greater press freedom in Qatar. added that he seemed to be doing something else, “This is impossible.”

Earlier this week, a Danish camera crew was harassed by Qatari security guards during a live report. The World Cup organizers later apologized.

Teixeira said, “Over-enthusiastic officials and bureaucrats who do not understand what the government has decided and act reflexively can go awry at least once.”

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