4 Oct 2013

FIFA kicks off crunch World Cup meeting in Zurich

5:55 am on 4 October 2013

World football's governing body FIFA has kicked off a crunch meeting behind closed doors in Zurich amid claims of rights abuses by the 2022 World Cup hosts Qatar and wrangling over plans to hold the tournament in the winter.

FIFA's executive committee session had already been scheduled to grapple with the thorny issue of changing the traditional June and July dates in order to escape the stifling Gulf heat, and they now have to deal with new charges if slaveryt style treatment of migrant labourers working on the emirate's massive infrastructure projects for the 2022 tournament.

The international human rights group Amnesty International plans to publish an in-depth report next month on the situation in Qatar, the world's wealthiest nation per capita.

Britain's Guardian newspaper claims dozens of migrant labourers have died working in Qatar in recent weeks.