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BRITISH trade unionists called on David Cameron yesterday to take a stand against modern-day slavery when he lunches with the emir of Qatar this week.
The TUC issued an open letter to the Prime Minister pointing out that conditions for foreign workers — including those building the infrastructure for the 2022 World Cup — continued to be of “grave concern.”
It continued: “Figures confirmed by Qatar show that 964 workers from India and Nepal alone died between 2012 and 2013, a rate of 40 every month.”
The TUC called on Cameron to swing behind union demands for an end to the kafala system — which effectively indentures foreign workers to a Qatari employer if they want to enter or remain in the country.
British workers also urged the PM to push the emir on allowing workers their internationally recognised rights to collective bargaining and trade unions and ensure World Cup workers are paid fairly.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Silence from David Cameron will be taken as support for what is effectively slavery in Qatar.
“Britain must be part of the international campaign to ensure that Qatar improves living and working conditions for migrant workers.
“The World Cup should a symbol of global friendship, not smeared with the blood of those who build its stadiums.”
Cameron is also under pressure to tackle Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani on the emirate’s alleged blind eye towards funding of terror groups such as Isis and al-Qaida during their Downing Street luncheon.
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