The European Parliament on Thursday adopted a resolution on the human rights situation in Qatar, calling on Qatar and FIFA to extend compensation to the families of workers who suffered during the construction of the FIFA Cup infrastructure. world 2022.
“MPs mourn the death of thousands of migrant workers mainly in the construction sector who helped the country prepare for the tournament, as well as all those injured,” Parliament said in a statement. He added that he welcomes the compensation of families through the so-called Workers’ Support and Insurance Fund by the Qatari government, but regrets that not all families have access to this fund.
MEPs call on the Qatari government to include “all those affected since the start of work related to the FIFA World Cup, also covering worker deaths and other human rights abuses”.
Lawmakers highlighted the role of FIFA, asking world football’s governing body to participate in a “comprehensive reparations programme” for workers’ families and accused the body of suffering from “endemic, systemic and deeply rooted corruption”. rooted”. “The organization has seriously damaged the image and integrity of world football,” the resolution adds.
At the same time, the text recognizes Qatar’s recent labor policy reforms, saying that the parliament “supports Qatar’s recent efforts to improve workers’ conditions and rights, which the international community has raised, but calls full implementation of the reforms adopted”.
Qatar has faced criticism since winning the tournament in 2010. Allegations of bribery and corruption have hampered the bidding process, and the country’s record on human rights and the treatment of migrant workers have been criticized by activists, The politicians and football associations before the World Cup.
The adopted resolution also criticizes Qatar’s treatment of the LGBTQ+ community and women.
Antonius Manders, a Dutch Conservative MEP, organized an initiative for lawmakers to wear “OneLove” armbands during the debate. Footballers wearing these armbands during the World Cup risk “sporting sanctions” from FIFA in Qatar, where homosexuality is illegal.
Manders told POLITICO he wanted to show that “we are against all kinds of discrimination and against human rights violations in Qatar by FIFA”. But he added he was “disappointed” that MEPs remained reluctant to stand up and show it. “There you see the power of FIFA’s long arm,” he said.
There was a large majority in favor of the resolution and only a few negative votes, particularly from the margin, parliament officials told POLITICO.
There had been some hesitation before the vote, particularly within the S&D and the EPP, with Socialist lawmaker and Deputy Speaker of Parliament Eva Kaili saying on Wednesday that Qatar is a “frontrunner in labor rights” but that some “still discriminate” against it.
But Spanish S&D MEP Pedro Marques called Thursday’s resolution “an important political message on Qatar”, others like Jan-Christoph Oetjen reiterated in a written statement and added that the World Cup would not have should never have taken place in Qatar.