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BeIN Sports F1 pull out not just Middle East business

In pulling out of bidding to renew Formula 1 rights for the Middle East and North Africa, beIN Sports appears to have caved into piracy. It is the first time a significant rights decision affecting over $100 million in potential payments has been attributed directly to piracy, even though there are other factors involved in this case. The main factor, indeed the chief cause of the piracy, was the cold war that broke out in June 2017 between Qatar, beIN Sports’ home country, and Saudi Arabia. At that time the Saudis, along with its allies Bahrain, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, cut all diplomatic and commercial links with Qatar, launching a trade boycott with accusations about supporting terrorism in the region. Qatar denied…

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