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7 Jun 2019

James Thorogood, DW (Germany)

Qatar 2022: FIFA admits violation of workers' standards

See all tags Allegations

Shocking revelations brought to light by an investigative report on Qatar's World Cup preparations by German broadcaster WDR have been referred to as "serious allegations" by football's governing body FIFA...

"We are captured," [said Nepali worker Dil Prasad] told WDR. "Every day we nourish ourselves on water and bread. Without money we can't do anything else. Month on month our situation gets worse and worse.... If the companies would just pay us the money we're owed"... While a lack of pay was a recurring theme, so too were the deaths of migrant workers... 1,426 [Nepali workers] had passed away between 2009 and 2019, while there were 111 deaths this year alone. 

...football's governing body had stressed that the allegations related not to the alleged offenses on stadium construction sites in Qatar, but to other projects over which they had no influence... FIFA did admit to a breach in workers' standards for the first time in a press release on Wednesday: "We are aware of reports that the company TAWASOL – a sub-contractor in the construction of the Al Bayt Stadium – has violated the standards for workers." The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy... has since confirmed that 23 TAWASOL employees have been paid their outstanding earnings and will continue to work on the site.

Yet it's another troubling development surrounding the working conditions for guest workers, which have been heavily criticized for several years by unions and human rights groups alike.