DOHA: Qatar has recalled some national service conscripts from their civilian jobs to boost stadium security during the World Cup.

With more than one million fans expected to visit during the 32-nation tournament, the Gulf state will be relying on foreign security forces as well as its own army and police for the massive operation.

Since 2014, all Qatari men aged between 18 and 35 have had to train for four months with the military. Dodging the duty can incur a year in prison and a fine of 50,000 Qatari rials ($13,700).

The emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, said in a recent interview that he was considering extending national service to women.

Conscripts in key jobs can delay their national service. “Qatar’s national service programme will continue as normal during the World Cup,” a government official said in a statement.

“Recruits completing their mandatory service will be supported by a small number of temporary recalls. This is standard practice and happens every year during major public events such as the national day celebrations,” the official added.

Published in Dawn, September 28th, 2022

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