Openly gay basketball star John Amaechi doesn't find FIFA President Sepp Blatter's gay joke very funny.

When asked what he advised gay fans attending the 2022 World Cup tournament in Qatar, a mainly Muslim country which forbids gay and lesbian relationships, Blatter responded with a joke.

After a long pause, Blatter answered: “I would say that they should refrain from sexual activities.”

The joke drew a modest chuckle from reporters, then Blatter continued with a more serious response.

“We are living in a world of freedom and when the World Cup will be in Qatar, this will be in 2022,” he said. “And you can see in the Middle East the opening of this culture. It is another culture because it is another religion, but in football we have no boundaries.”

“I think there shall not be any discrimination against any human beings on this side or that side – or left or right or whatever.”

“I'm sure they [gay fans] will be admitted to such matches,” he added.

Amaechi, who came out gay in 2007, blasted the comments, writing at his website that FIFA “has endorsed the marginalization of LGBT people around the world.”

“Blatter's words aren't really about sex, as I can't imagine that many gay football fans would be bold enough to do it in public in Qatar,” Amaechi wrote. “Rather, what he is really saying is 'Don't be camp, don't hold hands, don't look into each other's eyes, don't book rooms with one bed, don't have candle-lit dinners in the restaurant …' and on and on.”

“He's really saying don't even 'look' gay, re-closet yourself and pretend the ties and love and affection you have for your partner or even a random bloke you might meet on your travels are gone for the whole time you are in Qatar.”