Qatar UN envoy deletes Twitter account after uproar over cursing Jews, gay men

Tweets by the Qatari UN envoy cited antisemitic tropes and called on God to "curse" gay people.

Twitter app logo is seen in this illustration taken, August 22, 2022. (photo credit: REUTERS/DADO RUVIC/ILLUSTRATION)
Twitter app logo is seen in this illustration taken, August 22, 2022.
(photo credit: REUTERS/DADO RUVIC/ILLUSTRATION)

Qatar's Ambassador to the United Nations Hend Al-Muftah deleted her Twitter account (@halmuftah) after it was revealed that she had published tweets repeating antisemitic tropes, calling Jews "our enemies" and calling for "God's curse" against gay men.

Muftah deleted her account just days after losing her bid to become chair of the UN Forum on Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law.

The president of the UN Human Rights Council, Federico Villegas, announced two weeks ago that Patricia Hermanns, the permanent representative of the Bahamas, would fill the role. His announcement did not mention the controversy surrounding Muftah.

Three days before the announcement, the NGO UN Watch sent a letter to Villegas detailing Muftah's tweets and expressing "grave concern" at the UN envoy's nomination to the position of forum chairperson.

 A general view of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, June 13, 2022.  (credit: REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE) A general view of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, June 13, 2022. (credit: REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE)

"Qatar’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva has a long record of publishing racist tropes about Jews, bigoted attacks on gays, and disinformation and conspiracy theories about Western societies and liberalism," wrote UN Watch in the letter.

Antisemitic tweets posted by Muftah include one reading “We learned from a young age that the Jews are our enemies!” and another recommending a book called "The Great Conspiracy" by Dr. Mustafa Mahmoud which accuses Jews of infecting Western civilization with “obscenity and decadence, cocaine, crack, nudity, sex and violence.”

Additional tweets by the Qatari envoy to the UN include one responding to a UN plea for LGBTQ+ rights in Africa, where she wrote: “Stay away from Middle East and Arab countries, keep your rights for your people.”

Another tweet stated that "Defending human rights has nothing to do with gay rights!” with two others calling on God to "curse" gay people.

Yet another tweet by the UN ambassador read "The end of America and others does not need any prophecy… Our Messenger and our Qur’an told us about it 1400 years ago, and it is inevitably true…”

FIFA highlights 'human rights projects' in World Cup in Qatar

The FIFA World Cup will be held in Qatar later this year. Muftah recently met with FIFA President Gianni Infantino. 

On Tuesday, Infantino met with Villegas in Geneva and discussed "various human rights-related projects including on the FIFA World Cup in Qatar."

“I am very happy to have met the UNHRC president and to have shared with him how the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 has been an opportunity to carry out long-lasting reforms,” said Infantino, according to a FIFA press release.

“The abolishment of the kafala system [to monitor migrant laborers], the introduction of minimum wages and heat protection measures for workers are among the positive changes that are recognized and praised by independent international organizations," it said. "FIFA played a part on the substantial progress that has been made in a very short time, and we will keep on working together with the Qatar authorities to make sure that the upcoming FIFA World Cup will be a tournament where everyone will be welcome.”

Villegas stated that he was glad to hear "about recent developments that demonstrate that as an organization, FIFA has taken a strong stance to combat human rights abuses, such as racism and discrimination, which are welcome and I continue to encourage.”