World football’s governing body FIFA on Friday said it will not sanction the German national team for its T-shirt protest in support of human rights before a World Cup qualifier. Germany head coach Joachim Loew said he supported the players after they wore black T-shirts with white lettering to spell out “Human Rights”, aimed at 2022 World Cup host nation Qatar, before Thursday’s 3-0 win over Iceland.
“It was a sign that we stand up for all human rights in the world, no matter where,” said Loew after the qualifier in Duisburg.
FIFA prohibits political statements during its matches, but the governing body told AFP subsidiary SID they will not sanction the Germans.
“FIFA believes in freedom of expression and in the power of football to drive positive change,” it said in a statement on Friday.
FIFA had already also said it will not penalise the Norway team for a similar protest connected to human rights issues in Qatar.
Human rights groups have been heavily critical of Qatar for its treatment of migrant workers. Qatar disputes the claims.