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Qatar says Hummel ‘trivializing’ commitment to migrant workers

Qatar's World Cup organizing committee says sportswear maker Hummel is "trivializing" its efforts to improve conditions for migrant workers after revealing Denmark's kit in protest at the issue.

Qatar‘s World Cup organizing committee says sportswear maker Hummel is “trivializing” its efforts to improve conditions for migrant workers after revealing Denmark’s kit in protest at the issue.

Hummel, who are the Danish football team’s long-term kit supplier, released the side’s 2022 World Cup jerseys on Wednesday, including a black third-choice design which is the “colour of mourning”, to honour the migrant workers who died during construction work for the tournament.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) promised in November to wear clothing with “critical messages” at the World Cup and while FIFA rules prohibit political statements, the team uniform is a major change to their iconic kits.

The three Denmark kits are all-red, all-white and all-black, with their iconic white chevrons faded into the same single colour as the shirt.

“This shirt carries with it a message,” Hummel said. “We don’t wish to be visible during a tournament that has cost thousands of people their lives.

“We support the Danish national team all the way, but that isn’t the same as supporting Qatar as a host nation.”

The Qatar Supreme Committee (QSC) responded to the kit release by disputing Hummel’s allegations, arguing it trivialized their “genuine commitment to protect the health and safety” of migrant workers, estimated to be around 30,000, largely from South Asia.

Qatar says that three labourers died in work-related accidents during construction work for the World Cup, although the nation has been accused of under reporting deaths with limited data released by authorities.

“We dispute Hummel’s claim that this tournament has cost thousands of people their lives,” the QSC statement said.

“Furthermore, we wholeheartedly reject the trivializing (of) our genuine commitment to protect the health and safety of the 30,000 workers who built FIFA World Cup stadiums and other tournament projects.

“Like every country, progress on these issues is a journey without a finish line, and Qatar is committed to that journey.

“We urge the DBU to accurately convey the outcome of their extensive communication and work with the Supreme Committee, and to ensure that this is accurately communicated to their partners at Hummel.”

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