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Guardian: Lynton Crosby offered to undermine 2022 Qatar World Cup | Qatar News

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One of the world’s best-known political operatives offered to work on a campaign to cancel the 2022 Qatar World Cup, according to documents seen by the Guardian newspaper.

Sir Lynton Crosby, a UK-based Australian political strategist, personally signed the pitch that aimed to tarnish Qatar’s reputation to get football’s biggest event awarded to another country, the Guardian reported on Sunday.

Crosby requested the equivalent of $6.4m payable to his lobbying firm, CTF Partners, for a campaign “that would associate Doha with terrorism in the minds of the public”, according to the report.

His services would also include putting pressure on FIFA to “restart the bidding process”, said Crosby.






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The document named “Project Ball” said CTF Partners could set up full-time war rooms around the world to spread negative stories about Qatar in the mainstream media, run fake grassroots campaigns on social media, and lobby potentially friendly politicians, journalists and academics.

The pitch was seen by the Guardian and the campaign group Spinwatch as part of an investigation into how the UK has become a major centre for global lobbying campaigns, particularly over conflicts in the Middle East.

According to the article, his potential client was “a self-styled Qatari opposition leader based in London named Khalid Al-Hail”.

“Al-Hail has faced repeated questions over his funding and the nature of his campaign activities in London, which include his businesses paying MPs and prominent football players to appear at anti-Qatar events,” wrote the Guardian.

“His events have often aligned with the foreign policy objectives of Qatar’s regional enemies in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.”

The news report cited Crosby’s lawyers as saying no contract with Al-Hail was ever entered into and none of the work outlined in the proposal was undertaken.

‘Disastrously farcical’

CTF Partners confirmed to the Guardian it provided Al-Hail with “a minimal amount of media advice” during last year’s state visit to London by Qatar’s Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

“During this visit a PR company that had previously worked with Al-Hail made a disastrously farcical attempt to pay hundreds of actors to protest outside Downing Street during the emir’s visit to see Theresa May,” the Guardian reported.

Crosby did not respond to the publication’s request for comment on claims his company also provided PR support for Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during his state visit to the United Kingdom last year.

Qatar has been under a sea, air and land blockade imposed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt since June 2017.

The quartet accuses Doha of supporting “terrorism” and seeking closer ties with Iran, accusations Qatar vehemently denies.






Inside Story: What are the limits of foreign lobbying in the UK? (25:00)

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Bride calls off wedding after discovering fiancé made ‘sexist’ demand to her dad

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A bride made the devastating decision to cancel her wedding to her partner of seven years after her dad revealed the ‘sexist’ demand his family had made behind her back.

The dad says his daughter got engaged recently and he had always been fond of her fiancé, who he thought of as “kind, humble and always respectful to our family”.

However, he says when he has met the man’s family for dinner on a couple of occasions, they made remarks towards his daughter which made him feel uncomfortable, including: ‘I don’t know why you’re working, isn’t that the husband’s job? It’s the mother’s job to be taking care of the children’.

As his daughter pair pressed ahead with their plans for the ceremony, the dad says her fiancé arranged a meeting with them both and his parents, adding that his daughter couldn’t be involved.

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Gordon Ramsay’s £20 ‘preselected’ cheese board labelled ‘insulting’ by furious customer

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Gordon Ramsay has sparked outrage once again as a customer complained that a cheese board he received at one of the celebrity chef’s restaurants was “insulting” and “preselected”.

Previously, Gordon was slammed for the size of his steak and chips, was told to “get a grip” for the price of his fry-up and criticised for the roast which was compared to a ‘child’s portion’.

But the latest customer to be disappointed by the TV chef’s food was Simon, who visited the three Michelin star restaurant with friends, Daily Star reports.

Simon was ‘insulted’ after receiving a “preselected” cheese board, and took to TripAdvisor to leave a two-star review.

Their review said: “I visited GR hospital road on a Friday night with friends for a special treat.

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Mum shares tip to fit three pizzas on one oven shelf to make family cooking easy

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Cooking pizzas for the whole family should be quick and easy dinner option – but it usually also throws up a headache.

With only one small oven to get the job done, we have to decide between either cooking one at a time and eating separately, or attempting to rotate them every few minutes to cook them evenly.

But one mum has revealed a painfully easy solution to get three frozen pizzas on one shelf, giving her room to put chips on a tray below – and you’ll wonder why your brain has never come up with the solution itself.

Posting on the Family Lockdown Tips & Ideas Facebook group, the mum demonstrated how she cuts the frozen pizzas in half before arranging them all on a single oven rack, making use of all available space.

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