Thousands took to the streets in the Qatari capital, Doha, to celebrate the nation's winning effort to host the 2022 soccer World Cup.
After the bid was announced in Zurich, horns blared and crowds screamed in a joyous reaction in central Doha.
The event will be the first major global sporting event in the Middle East. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Hamad Al-Thani accepted Qatar's selection on behalf the emirate and the region.
"Thank you for believing in change, thank you for believing in expanding the game, thank you for giving Qatar a chance, and we will not let you down. You will be proud of us, you will be proud of the Middle East and I promise you this."
Qatar, a tiny nation with a population of 1.7 million, has never qualified for the World Cup finals. But it has hosted the Gulf Cup tournaments in 1992 and 2004 when it won both times.
Ten out of the 12 stadiums will be located within a 25 to 30 km radius of one another.
Lusail Stadium, will host the opening match and final. The air-conditioned stadium, which would have a capacity of 86,000, will take four years to build.
Interview with Qatar’s Ambassador to the US, Ali Bin Fahad Al-Hajri:
Qatar was competing in its bid against Japan, South Korea, Australia and United States.
The next World Cup tournament will take place in Brazil in 2014. Russia was selected Thursday as the host country for the event in 2018. This year's World Cup was held in South Africa.
Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.
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