UK comedian shreds 10,000 pounds over David Beckham Qatar World Cup deal


Former football player David Beckham leaves after paying his respects to Britain's Queen Elizabeth lying in state, following her death, in London, Britain September 16, 2022. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

LONDON (Reuters) - A British comedian shredded 10,000 pounds ($11,900) in bank notes after giving the former England soccer captain David Beckham an ultimatum to pull out of his role as an ambassador for Qatar at the World Cup.

Beckham, who played for Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder, is working for Qatar, which has been criticised for its treatment of foreign workers, LGBTQ+ rights and restrictive social laws.

Joe Lycett said last week he would donate the money to charity if Beckham agreed to cut ties with the World Cup host or he would shred the money before the tournament began.

On Sunday, Lycett dressed in a rainbow dress, posted footage of him putting two stacks of 5-pound notes into a woodchipper.

Lycett earlier said Beckham was a "a gay icon" who was working for Qatar, which is "one of the worst places in the world to be gay".

Beckham has not publicly acknowledged or responded to the ultimatum.

Homosexuality is illegal in Qatar and the country's organisers of the World Cup have warned visitors against public displays of affection but say that everyone, no matter their sexual orientation or background, is welcome at the event.

The country has also denied accusations of abusing of workers and bribery to win the hosting rights.

($1 = 0.8415 pounds)

(Reporting by Andrew MacAskill; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)

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