The government of World Cup host Qatar strongly opposes the establishment of a compensation fund for migrant workers who died or were injured during preparations for the World Cup.

Labour Minister Ali bin Samikh Al Marri called it a “publicity stunt” in an interview with the AFP news agency.

The human rights organizations Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch had demanded that Qatar and the World Football Association (FIFA) set up a compensation fund with a financial endowment of 440 million, equivalent to the prize money of the World Cup. In the run-up to the World Cup, 6500 migrant workers are reported to have lost their lives.

“Where are the victims? Do you have the names?”

FIFA had previously claimed there was an “ongoing dialogue” about setting up a fund. Marri now said the plan was not feasible. “Every death is a tragedy,” he acknowledged, but stressed, “There are no criteria to set up these funds. Where are the victims? Do you have the names of the victims? How do you get these numbers?”

Nevertheless, Marri assured, “the door is open, we have already dealt with many cases and solved them.”