Calls Grow for Danish Government to Slash Blast Funding if CS:GO Event Doesn’t Cut Abu Dhabi Ties
While most CS:GO fans thought 2022 ended on a high note with the BLAST Premier World Final 2022 bringing several top teams together to brawl it out for $500,000, there are arguments circulating that could dampen the BLAST event’s celebrations.
On Dec. 16, the Danish Broadcasting Corporation took aim at the Danish government, pointing out that taxpayers were indirectly funding Saudi Arabia’s government. Published by the DR, the author drew attention to the fact the Danish company, Blast ApS, “has received millions in kroner in public investment.”
The revelation has perked the ears of Danish parliamentarians, with the Enhedslisten’s (an “eco-socialist political party”) spokesperson for culture, Søren Søndergaard, discussing their intention of attempting to take this before a parliamentary committee.
Between 20 to 30 percent of BLAST is owned by the Danish government via the Vækstfonden, a state investment fund. As well as hosting the World Finals in Abu Dhabi, BLAST has a three-year-long deal with Abu Dhabi Gaming. The Vækstfonden has provided BLAST with roughly 74.5 million DKK (amounting to over $10 million USD).
The reasoning behind these complaints stems from Saudi Arabia’s history of human rights abuse. NEOM stunned the world by introducing a new way of life, which would begin in Saudi Arabia.
NEOM is Saudi Arabia’s plan for a mega city, filled with self-sustaining technology, and described by the company as “a new gateway to the world.” This revolutionary design has already been surrounded by controversy. Saudi Arabian forces allegedly killed Indigenous Saudi tribe members in an attempt to evict them from their land to build the NEOM project.
Paired with the other countless reports of human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia, this has the chance to change BLAST.
The Gulf region has been in the spotlight recently regarding the controversies involving the FIFA World Cup 2022.
Amnesty International Denmark’s manager, Malene Haakanson stated: “the United Arab Emirates, like other authoritarian regimes in the region, use major sporting events to remove the focus from the serious human rights violations that take place in the country.”
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