Human Rights Watch (HRW) is now calling on Fifa and its member associations to promote “measures to protect the construction workers”. It is rather late in the day, but still, better than nothing. And just in case anyone thinks this is an argument about how long the lunch break should be, no, it is about “preventable deaths” and slave labour.
The report came out on the day when two clubs sponsored by Qatar meet: Paris St. Germain and FC Bayern.
Qatar Tourism Authority as we all know, pays for PSG. But fewer people know that the airport of Qatar is a “platinum sponsor” of Bayern Munich, giving the club at the very least ten million euros per season. FC Bayern does not give any concrete figures on this sponsorship – it could be an awful lot more.
Nicholas McGeehan, who worked on the latest Qatar report said, “FC Bayern was very clearly warned by Human Rights Watch in January 2016 about the potential impact of its relationship with Qatar.” He also said, “HRW has provided advice on the steps that the club could take to protect its reputation. Since then, the relationship with Qatar has deepened, but Bayern has continued to be silent about the abuse of workers.”
McGeehan also says the club is “in a very visible commercial relationship” with a government that disregards the lives of young men: “It would be appropriate for FC Bayern to use its influence on Qatar’s government and publicly demand immediate steps to live of the migrant workers in Qatar.