Dua Lipa Shut Down Rumors Of A FIFA World Cup 2022 Performance

The singer’s statement left no room for ongoing speculation.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 08: Dua Lipa performs at Qudos Bank Arena on November 08, 2022 in Sydne...
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More than a million people may travel to Qatar for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in late November, but Dua Lipa will not be one of them. The singer cleared up misinformation on Nov. 13 after hearing rumors that she would be performing at the opening ceremony on Nov. 20. In an Instagram story, she firmly put a stop to the speculation, and then called attention to ongoing concerns about human rights abuses in the host country.

“There is currently a lot of speculation that I will be performing at the opening ceremony of the world cup in Qatar,” she wrote. “I will not be performing and nor have I ever been in any negotiation to perform. I will be cheering England on from afar and I look forward to visiting Qatar when it has fulfilled all the human rights pledges it made when it won the right to host the World Cup.”

The message — signed “one love, Dua x” — left no room for ongoing speculation about her reasons for not wanting to participate. Though the “Levitating” singer didn’t reveal whether or not she was ever pursued as a potential performer, she made it clear that wasn’t interested in being involved with the international sporting event either way. Her reasoning seemingly centers on human rights issues.

FIFA awarded the 2022 Word Cup to Qatar in 2010, and the decision has proved controversial ever since. Critics have called out the country’s anti-gay laws and the lack of protections for the migrant workers who are building the necessary infrastructure, per BBC Sport. Even with certain labor reforms and assurances from the government that everyone is welcome (including LGBTQ+ fans), many still have concerns. The men’s Danish soccer team, for example, wanted to wear training jerseys with the message “Human Rights for All”; however, FIFA recently rejected the design, according to the Danish Football Federation’s CEO, Jakob Jensen, in an interview with Denmark’s DR Sporten.

Had Lipa actually wanted to have a role in the event, she likely would have faced strong backlash. A survey reported on by the Guardian on Nov. 7 found that 62% of Lipa’s fellow Brits believe the criminalization of homosexuality in Qatar should have kept it from becoming the host nation. A smaller but still substantial group, 43%, think England and Wales’ national teams should skip the competition.

K-pop star Jung Kook was the one who ended up in the hot seat after BTS announced in a Nov. 11 tweet that he’ll perform at the opening ceremony as well as be a part of the official soundtrack. Many fans shared their disappointment, even as others celebrated. “If JK actually performs at the opening ceremony I won’t ever support BTS again and I hope Bighit will change their mind!” one wrote. Another voiced their pride that the singer got the opportunity, then added, “But I dont [sic] support it. I thought BTS stood for human rights?”