Two German broadcasters have reportedly alleged that they were detained and imprisoned by Qatari Police while they tried to investigate the plight of migrant labourers working in the preparations for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Filmmaker and the head of a Munich-based production company Peter Giesel and his cameraman Robin Ahne were reportedly detained for 27 hours after filming the working conditions of labourers from the balcony of their hotel in Doha.
According to The Guardian, the duo were following up on the investigation by a leading British newspaper over the conditions endured by many of the 1.2 million migrant workers, most of them Nepalese, who have come into the country to work in an 100 billion-pound-plus construction boom before the football tournament.
Stating that they were interrogated for several hours, Giesel said that the police accused them of trying to start a riot by talking to the workers for which they were detained and put in jail, although he admitted that he and Ahne were treated well while in custody. Giesel further said that their equipment was confiscated for ''filming without permission'', adding that the police also tried to manipulate some of the footage and erase some.
The report mentioned that the duo were released after their friends and family got in touch with the German embassy in Qatar, with Giesel saying that they saw the Nepalese embassy flooded with workers trying to get their passports and documents back, adding that he and Ahne were however, invited back to Qatar.
Image: Members of the Swiss UNIA workers union display red cards and shout slogans during a protest in front of the headquarters of soccer's international governing body FIFA
Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters