Another media member has died while covering the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Following American journalist Grant Wahl’s sudden passing Friday at 48 after collapsing during Argentina’s match against the Netherlands, Qatar’s The Gulf Times reported Sunday that Qatari photojournalist Khalid al-Misslam had died “suddenly” Saturday. Misslam was working for Qatar’s Al Kass TV:
Two journalists have now passed away whilst covering the #FIFAWorldCup: US journalist Grant Wahl & now Qatari photo-journalist Khalid Al-Misslam.
No confirmation or official statement as of yet provided as to cause of death.
May they both Rest In Peacehttps://t.co/yNA6qhDskE
— Nima Tavallaey Roodsari (@NimaTavRood) December 11, 2022
Here’s the statement on that in that Gulf Times piece:
Al Kass TV photojournalist Khalid al-Misslam passed away recently. Al- Misslam, a Qatari, died suddenly while covering the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. We believe in Allah’s mercy and forgiveness for him, and send our deepest condolences to his family. We are all Allah’s and to Him we return.
There’s very little additional information available at the moment on what happened to al-Misslam. But any media death while covering a major sporting event is quite unusual, and two deaths in the same weekend is a stranger situation still. (And another migrant worker died in an accident during this tournament’s group stage, adding to this World Cup’s staggering human cost.)
There’s still a lot of discussion on exactly what happened with Wahl, too. He had been discussing battles with a medical issue all week, and he had received pushback from Qatari authorities for his writing and actions, including a detainment over wearing a rainbow shirt to a match. And there’s discussion about why there wasn’t a defibrillator available in the stadium, and about how he was transported to the hospital. Meanwhile, with al-Misslam, we know almost nothing at this point. We’ll see if any more comes out on what led to his death.