Berlin (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The 2022 World Cup should not be held in Qatar and the fans should boycott it as a sign of protest against the inhumane treatment of migrant workers on construction sites in the nation. This is the appeal launched by the German Cardinal Rainer Woelki, Archbishop of Cologne, as reported by the daily Süddeutsche Zeitung.
According to the prelate, who is a big soccer fan, Qatar has attracted thousands of workers from abroad with false promises, exploiting them and treating them "like animals". For this reason, the Cardinal finds it impossible to consider the country as a host of the sporting event, since these crimes are no longer a secret: "As soon as they arrive [in Qatar] – says Msgr. Woelki - migrant workers are deprived of the passport only to be humiliated and dehumanized. "
Since FIFA - in 2010 - chose Qatar for the 2022 World Cup, the country has been embroiled in cases of corruption and controversy over the continuing human rights violations on its building sites. In 2012 alone, the Qatari Ministry of Labour received over 6 thousand complaints from individuals or groups of migrant workers.
The majority of the complaints relates to cases of exploitation, delayed payment of wages, salaries that do not correspond to what was agreed, but also threats, cases of violence and deaths due to poor workplace safety.
Between 2012 and 2014, about 500 migrants from India died on building sites and the total count of the victims could be at least 1200.