Those watching Qatar’s 2022 World Cup will be expecting to see beautiful stadiums, state-of-the-art stadiums, seaplanes, and iconic stadiums, but sometimes even that won’t be enough. The director of the World Cup, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa, recently told The Daily Telegraph that a desire to keep costs down has led to the state to pay many of its construction workers in these nations around the world, including Qatari laborers, in crisp, white paper toilet paper. There are no reports of this type of payment scheme being used to pay migrant workers before the 2022 World Cup in the West Asian nation.
Nonetheless, the country has been faced with a series of surprising stumbling blocks since it was awarded the tournament. These include the signing of $90 billion contracts in order to build the stadiums, despite the fact that a great deal of this cost was actually in the form of debt taken on by the state. The country has also come under fire from human rights organizations for allegedly widespread labor abuses in its restaurants and hotels. And now, it seems that workers from countries such as India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka are able to turn to the ancient art of Omani carving to earn money. That art, considered by many to be among the most delicate in the world, has now turned up in a series of stark monochrome images in Qatari desert wastelands.
So far, there have been no apparent attempts to trace the men who carved the symbols or to accuse the men of any crimes, which is of course normal in most authoritarian regimes.