FIFA to put pres­sure on Qatar over hu­man rights

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

FIFA will con­tinue to “put pres­sure” on Qatar about the treat­ment of migrant labour­ers build­ing World Cup sta­di­ums in the Gulf Arab coun­try for the 2022 tour­na­ment, its Pres­i­dent said yes­ter­day.

The world foot­ball gov­ern­ing body in the past ad­mit­ted it was slow to act over con­cerns about the abuse of labour­ers in Qatar. It has since said hu­man rights would be fac­tored in to fu­ture World Cup host bids and on April 22 an­nounced plans for a spe­cial group to mon­i­tor work­ing con­di­tions. Pos­i­tive progress had been made “in terms of the treat­ment of work­ers” but more needed to be done, Gianni In­fantino told re­porters at a sports con­fer­ence. “We will put pres­sure, we will con­tinue to do that.” Qatar is spend­ing bil­lions of dol­lars on in­fra­struc­ture re­lated to host­ing the World Cup in 2022 and has im­ported hun­dreds of thou­sands of con­struc­tion work­ers from coun­tries such as In­dia, Nepal and Bangladesh for build­ing projects.

Qatar has an­nounced some changes in­clud­ing re­plac­ing its con­tro­ver­sial “kafala” or spon­sor­ship sys­tem that forces for­eign work­ers to seek their em­ployer’s con­sent to change jobs or leave the coun­try.

In­fantino said the 2022 tour­na­ment was an op­por­tu­nity to high­light is­sues that might have been ig­nored.

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