Awarding the 2022 World Cup to Qatar looking worse by the day

Sepp Blatter reveals Qatar as host of the 2022 World Cup, Dec. 2, 2010. (AFP)

Sepp Blatter reveals Qatar as host of the 2022 World Cup, Dec. 2, 2010. (AFP)

DANIEL AUSTIN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:11 PM ET

From the day FIFA awarded Qatar the hosting rights to the 2022 World Cup, almost everything surrounding the tournament has felt like a joke.

It’s not so funny anymore.

Logistical concerns — maybe holding a major international sporting event in the middle of summer in one of the hottest place on Earth isn’t the greatest idea, who knew? — have made FIFA look like a mess.

Allegations of institutional corruption have made the beautiful game appear awfully ugly.

But an investigative report on labour conditions on Qatari infrastructural sites released Wednesday by The Guardian paints a much darker picture of Qatar.

If any of the allegations brought forward in that story prove to be true, holding the World Cup in Qatar in nine years would, simply put, be criminal.

Major sporting events have been used as a means to establish development goals for as long as they’ve existed — think of the airport-rail connection built in Vancouver for the Olympics — and Qatar has coupled a national 20-year infrastructure project with its construction plans for the tournament.

To do so, the emirate has imported hundreds of thousands of migrant labourers, primarily from Nepal. In this summer’s blistering heat, Nepalese workers are alleged to have died at a rate of nearly one a day.


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