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Fifa ‘seeks cooperation’ of Arabsat to tackle beoutQ Women’s World Cup piracy

World football’s governing body Fifa is “seeking the cooperation” of regional satellite provider Arabsat to prevent further unauthorised broadcasts of its Women’s World Cup competition by Saudi-based pirate channel beoutQ.

In a statement issued on Sunday, it said it is aware pirated transmissions are being made available across the Middle East and North Africa region, primarily Saudi Arabia.

“BeoutQ’s unauthorised transmissions of the Fifa Women’s World Cup 2019 are made available by way of Arabsat satellite frequencies. Fifa is therefore seeking the cooperation of Arabsat in addressing the misuse of Fifa’s intellectual property,” it added.

The intervention came just days after a French court ruled that Arabsat distributes beoutQ on its satellites, something that Arabsat had denied.

Qatar-based beIN Media Group, which holds the rights in Mena to this year’s Women’s World Cup, brought that case against Arabsat.

Fifa said in its statement that it “continues to explore each of its legal options” in relation to beoutQ’s activities. A consortium of major rights-holders, including Fifa, plans to launch legal action in the Saudi courts against beoutQ, which the rights-holders believe is backed by the Saudi government.