Qatar World Cup Official Estimates Migrant Worker Death Toll Is 'Between 400 and 500'
The number of deaths among workers for the Qatar-hosted 2022 World Cup is "between 400 and 500," a top Qatar official said, the Associated Press reported.
A comment made by Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy's secretary-general Hassan al-Thawadi during an interview with Piers Morgan revealed the shocking estimate, which according to the AP, is "drastically higher" than previous years.
Morgan specifically asked al-Thawadi for an "honest, realistic total" of migrant workers that died "as a result of work they're doing for the World Cup."
The Qatari secretary-general said he didn't "have the exact number" but he estimated "around 400, between 400 and 500."
He also said that the exact number is "something that's been discussed" publicly, however, the AP reported that they haven't been shared openly before, noting that the Supreme Committee's death reports haven't yet been updated to reflect 2022's numbers.
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Per the AP, reports from 2014 to 2021 total the number of deaths at 40, with all but three of those reported being considered "non-work incidents" such as heart attacks.
Following al-Thawadi's comments, the Supreme Committee attempted to clarify why the figures are higher than what's been reported publicly.
The committee claimed that the 400-500 toll estimate was in reference to "national statistics covering the period of 2014-2020 for all work-related fatalities (414) nationwide in Qatar, covering all sectors and nationalities."
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The 2022 World Cup has received continued backlash around the host country's systemic discrimination against women and the LGBTQ+ community, as well as the reported deaths of 37 migrant workers who were helping to construct the stadiums where the World Cup is being held.
Marking the 22nd edition of the FIFA World Cup competition, the soccer championship brings together 32 teams from all over the world, including England, the 2018 winners France, USA, Spain and more.