FIFA World Cup | Qatar’s capital evicts thousands before tournament

4 weeks ago 13

Workers evicted from their homes in Doha, Qatar’s capital. They said Qatar had evacuated the towers where thousands of foreign workers had previously lived in preparation for the Fifa World Cup.

Thus, they alleged that officials had shut down and evacuated more than a dozen buildings. So, they were forcing the primarily Asian and African workers to seek sanctuary in whatever way they could. It included sleeping on the street outside one of their former homes.

Since international attention will be focused on Qatar until the World Cup begins on November 20, this shift comes less than four weeks before the tournament.

FIFA World Cup | Qatar’s capital evicts thousands before tournament

Inhabitants in Doha’s Al Mansoura district reported that 1,200 people lived in a single building, and police gave residents two hours to depart the structure around 8 p.m. on Wednesday. Municipal officials are said to have returned at about 10:30, forced everyone out, and shut the doors.

The men had not all been able to travel back in time to retrieve their belongings. He and most other workers who talked to Reuters hid their IDs and additional identifying information out of fear of reprisal from the police or their employers.

Five males were seen nearby loading a mattress and a mini-fridge into the back of a pickup truck. They were said to have rented a room in Sumaysimah, a city around 25 miles (40 kilometres) north of Doha.

According to a Qatari government official, the evictions have nothing to do with the World Cup and were planned “in accordance with existing comprehensive and long-term plans to re-organize districts of Doha.”

“Ghetto-ization”

FIFA, the world’s soccer governing organization, declined to comment, and inquiries about the 2022 World Cup in Qatar were directed to the country’s government. The phrase “ghettoization” refers to the deliberate creation of a community.

Qatar has a population of almost three million people, around 85 per cent being foreign employees. In contrast to the tens of thousands of people living in camps for the convenience of major construction companies. Thus, many evicted drivers, day labourers, or have contracts with corporations but are responsible for their accommodation.

According to one employee, the evictions did not affect the families of international workers. A Reuters reporter discovered more than a dozen buildings where residents claimed to have been evicted. They turned off the power to a few structures.

The great majority were found in locations where the government had rented out properties to accommodate World Cup attendees. Apartments in Al Mansoura and surrounding areas are advertised on the organizers’ website for $240 to $426 per night.

The Qatari source said local officials had begun enforcing a 2010 ordinance banning “workers’ camps near family living areas,” which covers much of central Doha. Some evicted workers want to move to workers’ housing in Doha’s southwestern industrial zone. Or distant regions, making them commute far to work.

Thus, employees complained about multiple evictions. When the mayor gave Mohammed, a Bangladeshi driver. And the other 38 residents in his house 48 hours to leave, he said he’d lived there for 14 years. He noted that workers who helped Qatar prepare for the World Cup were now forgotten.

FIFA World Cup | Qatar's capital evicts thousands before tournament

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