Russia, FIFA reach last-gasp TV deal for Confederations Cup

Rufina Vignone
Giugno 23, 2017

More than 23,000 firefighters and rescue workers will ensure security during the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, an official said on Tuesday as he presented a report to Deputy Emergencies Minister Vladimir Stepanov at a board meeting at the National Crisis Management Centre.

Russian workers, many of whom migrated internally, and migrant workers from neighboring countries both reported unpaid or delayed wages, work in conditions as cold as -25° C, and the failure of their employers to provide work contracts required for legal employment, the watch dog said. FIFA, the worldwide football association, has yet to fully deliver on its commitments to conduct effective monitoring of labor conditions ahead of the Confederations Cup and World Cup, Human Rights Watch said.

Human Rights Watch also said that workers were hesitant to speak about abuses, fearing reprisals from their employers.

Russian Federation will host the Confederations Cup, involving eight teams, starting at the weekend a year ahead of 32 nations arriving to play in 12 grounds in 11 different cities in the World Cup.

Similar complaints of wage theft were made by workers at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, the venue for the 2018 World Cup final, in interviews past year with the AP. At least 17 have died on World Cup stadium sites, according to the Building and Wood Workers' International global union.

We've heard plenty about the myriad human rights abuses that have occurred in Qatar during construction for the 2022 World Cup, but there's another World Cup to be held before we get to that inevitable disaster.

Human Rights Watch, which sought to interview construction workers as parts of its investigation, said that local police and security repeatedly sought to interfere with its work.

"FIFA recognizes its obligation to uphold the inherent dignity and equal rights of everyone affected by its activities", the introduction to the FIFA Human Rights Policy says and promises to respect "all internationally recognized human rights and (.) strive to promote the protection of these rights".

HRW specifically points to the lack of documentation on how FIFA handled the information about North Korean workers, who, according to a report in Norwegian football magazine Josimar, were working on the sites under "slave-like" conditions.

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