The World Cup in Qatar 2022

World Cup

Doha exploded as Qatar won its bid to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. A tiny country with just one major stadium, Qatar became the first Middle Eastern country to hold the tournament. The rich nation has reportedly spent over 229 billion dollars preparing for the game, which is 16 times what Russia says it spent on the 2018 World Cup. Behind the glamour and celebrity endorsements lurk corruption and human rights abuses. Manju Devi’s husband was one of many who died building the venues.

What’s the true cost of having a small country host the World Cup?

Tomorrow, we start working. Qatar had 12 years to create the largest infrastructure project in World Cup history. The Gulf State had to build eight state-of-the-art stadiums, establish new roads and rail lines, and enlarge its airport, as well as provide housing for almost 1 million spectators. There’s a big question mark over what all this infrastructure will be used for or if there will be demand for the IT post-world cup. Organizers have never admitted to the 229-billion-dollar price tag, but Qatar’s Finance Minister said 500 million dollars was spent every week for years to meet the deadline. All but one stadium had cooling systems installed, which tripled building expenses at Al yanub Stadium, one of the first.

The turf used for the pitches requires special cooling and water to stay in peak condition. To accomplish all of this, Qatar needs a large labor force. Its skyscrapers, resorts, and man-made islands were built by migrant workers, but this was on an entirely different scale. The kafala system can be a form of modern-day slavery and the features of its mount in some cases forced labor. It meant workers’ visas were sponsored by an employer who had complete control over their job and immigration status, so a laborer’s passport could be confiscated, and a worker couldn’t change jobs. Qatar does not allow exit permits, so if your boss is cruel, you have no way out. This is Diplal Mojito at home in Nepal. He spent seven years working on construction projects in Qatar.

Laxman kamati’s chronic back injury from his time in Qatar prevents him from working today. Sometimes workers weren’t paid for months. Those working on the Khalifa stadium in 2016 were only making 800 Qatari riyals a month or 220 dollars at the time.

Myra Katun says her husband Muhammad expected to clean houses in Qatar, but his sponsor gave him a construction job instead. Muhammad was one of the hundreds of migrant workers who committed themselves and never returned home.

Only in 2017 did Qatar prohibit labor during the warmest hours of the summer, but outside of that window, the heat could still be extreme enough to cause heart-related sickness and death. Between 2010 and 2020, over 650 migrant workers died. 70 of them died of sudden heart or respiratory failure, leaving many families with questions.

The administration has refused to undertake autopsies because it would be seen as a preventable death by human rights groups. Qatar closed 300 labor sites in 2019 and set heat stress standards. A year later, workers were allowed to leave the country without an exit permit and change jobs without their employers’ consent, but some families who lost loved ones were left without compensation. If migrant workers went to Qatar to pay for their children’s education or to lift their families out of poverty and that migrant worker comes home in a coffin, the consequences could be catastrophic. In May 2022, human rights groups asked FIFA to create a 440-million-dollar compensation fund for migrant workers.

The World Cup has brought attention to labor abuses in Qatar and the Gulf, which is excellent for October 2022. FIFA said Qatar achieved substantial labor rights development. In 2015, organizers moved the World Cup to colder November. Although the average temperature can still exceed 85 degrees Fahrenheit, the shift was disruptive to football leagues, especially in Europe. Many players are now more concerned about reports of Migrant labor rights violations in Qatar. One of my favorite images is of the German national football team with human rights on their chests, so athletes are saying they don’t want to play in a stadium where workers died. Several teams are planning to make a statement on the field, like Denmark, whose players will wear toned-down shirts in protest. Meanwhile, the host nation has worked hard to polish its image. David Beckham is being paid $277 million to promote Qatar for the 2022 World Cup.

Qatar aims to make $17 billion from the World Cup, but how will a country 200 times smaller than Saudi Arabia accommodate all the spectators? Qatar has 30 000 standard hotel rooms, but FIFA has booked 80% of them. Qatar hired two cruise ships for just under 10,000 persons. houses to rent to fans and shuttle planes so visitors can stay in nearby countries

For LGBTQ fans, the major issue isn’t where to stay in Qatar, but if they’ll be safe there. We don’t block anyone from coming to their health with diverse backgrounds or beliefs. Qatar welcomes visitors.

People criticize many aspects of Qatar’s World Cup preparations, often with good reason, but I think it’s unfair to suggest that the country doesn’t understand or like football. If one of the biggest sporting competitions on Earth is to go ahead, human rights organizations want to send a message that there should never again be a World Cup in Qatar.

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