‘Dark days in Qatar’: Nepali workers face bitter legacy of World Cup debts

For thousands of low-paid workers, this year’s games brought back only memories of abuse and exploitation

On a huge billboard in front of Kathmandu’s international airport, is a picture of five migrant workers with the words: “Meet the hardest working team in Qatar. Wouldn’t it be great if they were compensated for it?”

Just metres away, hundreds of young men board flights to Qatar and other Gulf states every day, hoping to earn enough to look after the families they leave behind. About 400,000 Nepalis work in Qatar and many toiled for years on its preparations for the World Cup.

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China censors maskless crowd footage in World Cup broadcasts

As protesters in Chinese cities rage against Xi Jinping’s zero-Covid policy, TV feeds are edited to avoid crowd scenes

Chinese state television has censored World Cup games to remove shots of maskless crowds after the sight of joyous fans celebrating in packed stadiums stoked anger back home, where hundreds of millions remain under strict pandemic restrictions.

A well-attended opening ceremony in Qatar – with no social distancing – led to users of Chinese social media platforms complaining that it contrasted with the severe isolation they felt under President Xi Jinping’s zero-Covid policy.

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‘Miracle of Doha’: calls for public holiday as Japan’s Samurai Blue put Germany to sword

Victory in World Cup opener sparks street celebrations and banishes painful memories in Doha of failure to qualify for USA 1994

Japan’s shock victory over Germany in Qatar on Wednesday sparked late-night celebrations and calls to mark the Samurai Blue’s momentous feat in their 2022 World Cup opener with a public holiday.

The clock was nearing midnight when Takuma Asano rifled Japan’s winner into the roof of the net at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha – a result that had seemed impossible after a poor first half from Japan, playing in their seventh straight World Cup.

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Migrant workers in Qatar left in debt after being ordered home before World Cup starts

Early end to migrants’ contracts leaves many owing large sums to recruiters and unable to support their families

World Cup hotel shields England team from fans – and Qatar’s labour abuses

Thousands of poorly paid migrant workers in Qatar are being forced to return home before the World Cup, leaving many fearing they will be left jobless, unable to support their families and deep in debt.

In some cases, workers say they have been sent back before the end of their contracts or without receiving their full salary or allowances.

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World Cup: Taiwan sees red over China ‘bullying’ Qatar into use of ‘Chinese Taipei’

Taipei angered by references to Taiwanese visitors after multiple name changes in visa application system for tournament in Doha

Taiwan has accused China of bullying after organisers of the World Cup in Qatar listed the nationality of Taiwanese visitors applying for an identification card as “Chinese Taipei”.

All World Cup ticket holders must apply for the Hayya card used to identify fans, which also serves as their Qatar visa, but Taiwan’s government originally expressed concern after discovering the online application system made no mention of the island.

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