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July 1, 2021

Mohammed al-Obaidly Recognized as a Trafficking in Persons Report Hero by the State Department

PRESS STATEMENT

U.S. Embassy Doha

July 1, 2021

 

On July 1, Secretary of State Antony Blinken honored eight individuals from around the world as 2021 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report Heroes in a virtual ceremony hosted by the U.S. Department of State.  The TIP Heroes award honors individuals who demonstrate an exceptional commitment to fighting human trafficking.

 

The Department is recognizing Mr. Mohammed al-Obaidly, Assistant Undersecretary of the Qatari Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor, Social Affairs, as a 2021 TIP Report Hero, for his leadership in spurring reforms to the sponsorship system and addressing labor abuses in Qatar.  Mr. al-Obaidly initiated and carried out many policies and programs that have helped trafficking victims in Qatar.  These include the creation of Labor Dispute Resolution Committees, elimination of exit permit requirements for migrant workers, implementation of a minimum wage, and abolition of the No Objection Certificate.

 

Mr. al-Obaidly’s work to combat human trafficking should be commended.  Working in a challenging and complex environment, he and his team continue to promote labor reforms and improve workers’ lives in Qatar.  We hope that recognition of Mr. al-Obaidly’s work will encourage greater efforts to address human trafficking by the government moving forward.

 

Qatar remains a difficult work environment for certain migrant worker populations.  While Mr. al-Obaidly has not solved all the human trafficking or labor rights problems in Qatar, he and his team at the Ministry have done much to increase transparency and strengthen protections against forced labor for migrant workers.

 

The Department of State applauds Mr. al-Obaidly’s persistence in implementing labor reforms to improve workers’ lives and prevent forced labor, and the Department looks forward to continuing to work with him and his colleagues to combat human trafficking.