Hundreds Of Migrant Workers Leave Qatar Without Pay

Hundreds Of Migrant Workers Leave Qatar Without Pay
Qatari Foreign Minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said the demands are “unrealistic” and called for a dialogue © AFP CHRIS J RATCLIFFE

A rights group on Thursday reported that hundreds of migrant workers have returned home unpaid from Qatar despite promises in the Gulf country of an improvement in labour conditions.

Qatari authorities have set up committees to resolve labour disputes as part of reforms, ahead of the FIFA World Cup, which the small energy-rich country will host in 2022.

Amnesty International, however, said hundreds of foreign workers employed by three construction and cleaning firms in Qatar had returned home penniless in recent months.

The London-based group said it had followed more than 2,000 people challenging the three companies after they did not pay their wages for several months, citing financial difficulties.

Eventually, they halted operations and ended their contracts.

The watchdog’s deputy director of global issues, Stephen Cockburn, said “Migrant workers often go to Qatar in the hope of giving their families a better life.

“Instead many people return home penniless after spending months chasing their wages, with too little help from the systems that are supposed to protect them.”

According to Amnesty in October 2019, Qatar announced it would introduce a labour support fund to provide compensation but has remained unfunded.

There was no immediate official comment in Qatar, home to over two million migrant workers.

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