Fact Check: World Cup German National Team's Plane NOT Banned From Landing In Qatar For FIFA Because Of Its Diversity Logo, Mural

Fact Check

  • by: Courtney Kealy
Fact Check: World Cup German National Team's Plane NOT Banned From Landing In Qatar For FIFA Because Of Its Diversity Logo, Mural No Plane Ban

Did Qatar ban the German team's plane landing there for the FIFA World Cup because of the aircraft's inclusive logo and mural? No, that's not true: The plane left Frankfurt, Germany, and landed in Muscat, Oman, for training in mid-November. The German team boarded a smaller plane from there to fly the shorter distance to Qatar for the World Cup.

The German National Team's official airline Lufthansa, the flag carrier of Germany, changed the team's plane name to "Fanhansa" for the fans of the World Cup worldwide and put a logo saying "Diversity Wins" and a mural of a diverse group of people on the side of the aircraft.

The claim appeared on Instagram on November 21, 2022. The post says:

Qatar refuses to receive the German national team's plane, which bears the g@y logo, which forced them to return the plane to the airport of the Sultanate of Oman, and it was replaced by another plane that did not bear any logo.

I am not partial to this country, and I do not know anyone in it, and I have not visited it before, but honestly, hats off in respect for this Muslim country.

Qatar is making history πŸ‘ Qatar is the pride of the Arabs β™₯️ β™₯️

This is what the post looked like at the time of writing:

Screen Shot 2022-12-05 at 11.13.27 AM.png

(Source: Instagram screenshot taken on Fri Dec 2 16:13:27 2022 UTC)

Lufthansa posted this video on YouTube on November 14, 2022, showing a crew applying the name, logo and mural to the German National team plane as a symbol of inclusion. The post says:

We are proud to be departing with the German national team DFB in our special A330 - The aircraft will be sporting a special livery that sends a clear message to the world: Diversity Wins!

We stand for openness, tolerance, diversity and bringing people together. Our company enables customers from all nations and cultures to connect, and welcomes everyone aboard, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, religion, nationality, identity or sexual orientation.

Now we are taking this same message - That Diversity Wins! - aloft and and around the world, through the special 'Fanhansa' livery which it has devised together with illustrator Peter Phobia.

This Getty Images photograph taken on November 14, 2022, with the dateline, Frankfurt Am Main, Germany, shows the team before departing for what the caption says is "the Pre World Cup Training camp in Oman." The caption also says:

Germany will stay in Muscat, Oman for a training camp before they travel on to Qatar for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.

According to this webpage on the official German National team's website, translated from German into English using Google Translate, the different flights were decided jointly by the team and the airline for "reasons of sustainability," which is a term often related to climate change and other environmental concerns. The page describes the preplanned flight path as well:

... the German national team is traveling by scheduled flight to its World Cup training camp in Oman today. After traveling from Frankfurt to Muscat with Lufthansa as the official airline of the German national team, the team of national coach Hansi Flick will fly from Oman to the World Cup host country Qatar on Thursday, also for reasons of sustainability with a regional airline. An onward flight with Lufthansa would mean empty flights from Germany to Muscat and back from Doha ...

Despite beating Costa Rica, Germany was knocked out of the 2022 World Cup on December 1, 2022.

Other Lead Stories articles concerning the World Cup can be found here and here.

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  Courtney Kealy

Courtney Kealy is a writer and fact-checker at Lead Stories. A graduate of Columbia University’s School of Journalism, she specializes in national and foreign affairs with more than two decades experience in the Middle East. Her work has appeared on FOX News, AlJazeera America, ABC News, the New York Times, Marie Claire, Time and Newsweek.

Read more about or contact Courtney Kealy

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