DOHA, Qatar — A protester carrying a pride flag entered the pitch during Portugal’s win over Uruguay on Monday before being led away by security staff.
The pitch invader, who briefly stopped the Group H match in the second half, was also wearing a t-shirt carrying the messages “respect for Iranian women” and “save Ukraine.”
World Cup hosts Qatar have come under heavy criticism for their human rights record and ahead of the tournament, with the lack of LGBTQ+ rights a regular flashpoint. Nations including England, Germany and the Netherlands were prevented from allowing their captains to wear a “OneLove” anti-discrimination armband after FIFA made it clear players would face “sporting sanctions” for doing so, including receiving yellow cards.
Sources have also told ESPN that Belgium were ordered to remove the word “love” from the collar of their away shirt.
Qatar has said everyone was welcome, including LGBTQ+ fans, but that visitors should respect the nation’s culture.
Security has been strict throughout the World Cup with “flag and banner evaluation areas” set up at each stadium. Wales fans reported ahead of their first game against the United States that they were asked to remove rainbow-coloured bucket hats, although they were permitted for their second game of the tournament against Iran.
Germany staged their own protest earlier in the World Cup by covering their mouths during their team photo ahead of their opening game against Japan.
Information from the Associated Press contributed to this report.