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Fri 5 Sep 2014 01:47 AM

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Rights group 'deeply concerned' about missing staff in Qatar

Global Network for Rights and Development says two staffers have disappeared while investigating migrant labour issues

Rights group 'deeply concerned' about missing staff in Qatar
British human rights researcher Krishna Upadhyaya and photographer Ghimire Gundev.

The Global Network for Rights and Development said on Thursday that it is "deeply concerned" about the fate of two members of staff who have gone missing in Qatar while researching migrant labour in the Gulf state.

British human rights researcher Krishna Upadhyaya and photographer Ghimire Gundev, have not been heard from since August 31, the rights group said in a statement.

GNRD sent them to Doha on August 27 to conduct research for an upcoming report on the human rights crisis in the country.

Upadhyaya and Gundev stayed at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Doha, and were working from the Nepalese embassy, the statement said.

GNRD said it has and has "zealously fought to eliminate the abuse of Nepalese migrant workers in Qatar" since 2012.

It added that the pair were supposed to depart on August 31 to return to their respective workplaces in Norway and Britain.

"GNRD holds Qatari authorities responsible for the security and safety of its kidnapped employees and it will pursue through the international setups and the International Law, all those who are responsible for this offence," the statement said.

It urged Qatari authorities to immediately disclose the whereabouts of Upadhyaya and Gundev and to ensure that they are allowed immediate access to their family members, a lawyer of their choice and to any medical treatment they may require.

It also called on authorities to recognise that labour standards apply to all migrant workers, including the workers carrying out the infrastructural projects in preparation to the football World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

The GNRD added that it was prepared to undergo any legal action to help their missing members of staff and thanked British and the Norwegian Foreign Ministries and other human rights groups for their support.

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