Human Rights Watch’s report on human rights abuses in Qatar
Human Rights Watch (HRW), an international non-governmental organisation, has condemned Qatar and FIFA over unexplained deaths of migrant workers. According to the HRW, FIFA World Cup 2022 came after years of massive violations of migrant workers’ rights and human rights in Qatar.
HRW said in its report that migrant workers, their families, journalists and labour experts from the origin countries have spoken about abuses they faced in Qatar. They also called for a remedy fund.
HRW noted the contributions of millions of migrant workers in making the event possible. HRW said that migrant workers suffered abuse in the process.
On November 17, the families of migrant workers who died from origin countries in South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Africa called on FIFA and Qatar to take action in a five-minute video at the media briefing.
Over the last few months, HRW called on FIFA and Qatari authorities to provide a remedy for abuses against migrant workers. However, Qatari authorities objected to a remedy call.
HRW said that FIFA failed to protect workers’ rights. According to HRW, FIFA also failed to analyse the human rights concerns of journalists and migrant workers. HRW also slammed Qatar for the uncompensated deaths of migrant workers over the past 12 years.
A Nepali migrant worker told HRW that the workers built towers in Doha. He said that workers had to make those towers in Qatar’s extreme heat. Rejimonn Kuttapan, an Indian migrant worker, reportedly said, “The World Cup started in 2010 and now it is 2022. Within 20 days, everything will be over. We should not forget that thousands of lives have been sacrificed.”
Ram Pukar Sahani said that his father died while working on the construction of the stadiums. He said that his family was not provided compensation from his father’s employer.
Reportedly, more than 24,000 workers suffered human rights abuses in Qatar. The migrant workers did not get a day off for months or even years to build the stadium for the World Cup. Earlier, reports also emerged that migrant workers were not paid salaries for months. Some migrant workers at the Bin Omran Trading and Contracting (BOTC) firm did not receive salaries for up to five months. HRW also informed Qatari authorities about the incident.
Shariful Hasan, programme head of the Migration Programme and Youth Initiatives of BRAC, also told HRW that 1,300 Bangladeshi workers died while making stadiums over the last decade.
Over the last few months, HRW documented the human rights abuses in Qatar. It also urged sponsors of the World Cup to support calls for compensation for migrant workers.