09/27/2013, 00.00
NEPAL - QATAR

Qatar 2022, after the massacre of migrants Kathmandu recalls its ambassador

From the poorest villages of Nepal to the yards Doha 2022 host of the next World Cup; Qatar promotes a modern form of slavery. More than one million migrants ' trapped ' in the country: thousands are Nepalese.

Kathmandu ( AsiaNews) - In the face of inhuman living conditions imposed on foreign workers in Qatar , the authorities in Kathmandu yesterday decided to withdraw its ambassador from Doha . "We recalled our diplomatic representative following a controversy over his ability to work - said Madhay Poudel , government spokesman - he was unable to protect and promote the interests of our people in Qatar ."

In a survey carried out by the British newspaper The Guardian, the country is described as the worst place in which a Nepalese can emigrate to find work. Between 4 June and 8 August this year , at least 44 foreign workers have died from heart problems or accidents in the workplace and the trend is clearly worsening since FIFA has decided to award the 2022 edition of the World Cup to  Doha. They are 4 thousand immigrants who have already lost their lives in the building yards of Doha , 2022. " We are using all our diplomatic channels - added Poudel - if the situation gets worse we will take measures after talking with the Qatari authorities ."

The country has well-established system of kafala (or sponsor) , under which a migrant workers are deprived of their passport and submissive to their employer. They are subject to minimum wages, inhuman hours and working patterns. Without the permission of their ' sponsors ' they can not resign , leave the country or file a complaint in case of abuse , under penalty of arrest or deportation. These are just some of the most dramatic aspects of a form of modern slavery which now traps more than a million people. The 75 billion dollars of investment planned for the World Cup in 2022 - already agreed on with  major Western and Brazilian companies - have only encouraged this trend ..

FIFA , which will meet in Zurich on October 3 , nonetheless is trying to reassure international public opinion expressing its will to fight this trend : "The health , safety and dignity of every employee who contributes to the creation of the infrastructure for the next world cup is a priority of our committee - it said in a statement that appeared on the BBC on behalf of the organizers - we want to ensure that the event will be an example of sustainable development and will help to improve the working conditions of migrants in the country. "

 

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