Sepp Blatter tells Qatar to improve working conditions in World Cup prep
FIFA president Sepp Blatter has told Qatar "more must be done" to improve working conditions in the country as it prepares to stage the 2022 World Cup.
Blatter visited Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, who has previously acknowledged setbacks in development work that according to the International Trade Union Confederation has already cost 1,000 migrant worker lives.
The Emir said last year that new legal frameworks have been introduced to improve the situation on the ground.
Ahead of the FIFA executive committee meeting in Zurich on Thursday and Friday, when dates for the 2022 tournament are expected to be determined, Blatter urged Qatar to ensure all workers are guaranteed "fair" conditions.
Blatter said: "It was important for me to have an opportunity to get the latest information directly from the highest political authority, ahead of the executive committee meeting next week.
"It is encouraging to hear the Emir's personal commitment to workers' welfare and to get a sense of the improvements planned for all workers in Qatar.
"As various human-rights groups have recently noted, progress has been made already, especially with regard to the standards introduced by the supreme committee relating to 2022 construction sites, but more must be done in Qatar to ensure uniformly fair working conditions for all.
"This will only be possible through the collective effort of all stakeholders -- from the construction companies to the authorities. It is clear that Qatar takes its responsibility as host seriously and sees the FIFA World Cup as a catalyst for positive social change."