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mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
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» 06/05/2010
PHILIPPINES - SAUDI ARABIA
Filipino nurses in Riyadh against the centre of assistance to migrants: they have abandoned us
Head of Overseas Workers Employment Assistance Administration in Riyadh under accusation. Instead of helping abused nurses he demands they return to work. The 30 women were repatriated in March and worked for Annasbah, a Riyadh company known for ongoing abuses against employees. Now fears for the fate of 30 other companions still blocked in the Saudi capital.

Manila (AsiaNews / Agencies) - More than 30 Filipino nurses, for years victims of abuse in the Saudi company Annasbah, in recent days have accused the assistance office of the Overseas Workers Employment Administration (OWWA) in Riyadh of complicity with employers. The women repeatedly applied to the service centre run by Filipinos to obtain permission to return home, but were ignored and forced to return to work without any medical assistance. After months of waiting they had to pay for their return from their own pockets to pay. Now they fear for the fate of 30 other companions who are still in Saudi Arabia.

Eppie Bellamar, one of the survivors, said: "Instead of helping us the Filipino Foreign Workers Administration of Riyadh prolonged our agony, leaving in the hands of our exploiters, and now it is doing the same with our companions who are still in Saudi Arabia". Together with the other nurses she has compiled a list of charges against Burayag Nestor, Head of the Owwa Service in Saudi Arabia.

The document lists the "five deadly sins" committed by Burayag: the delay in the repatriation process for failing to put pressure on Annasbah for the issuing of visas, the absence of food and medical assistance for sick nurses, forcing the women to pay of one thousand Euros for the return ticket, instead of requiring repayment from the company. Burayag also asked the nurses to stop their protests and to return to work.

Annasban is a well known Saudi company active in the hospital service and uses Owwa services to find Philippine migrant workers to employ in its structures. In recent years it has often been accused of exploitation and inhumane working conditions with the partial complicity of the head of the Owwa in Riyadh. They are responsible for providing assistance to migrants and to report any abuses by businesses to the Philippine government.

In January, 88 nurses began a hunger strike to protest against the company and assistance to migrants office who had refused repatriation to a colleague who became ill during service, the a request that was judged inappropriate. To date, the Philippine authorities have not issued any official statement against the company, which continues to recruit the thousands of migrants who leave the country every day.

According to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) from 2007 to 2008, migration to the Middle East has seen an increase of 29.5% because of the wide availability of employment opportunities it remains among the top choices of migrants.  And this despite the terrible working conditions, the risk of forced conversions and sexual abuse suffered by women.

 


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See also
01/28/2010 PHILIPPINES – SAUDI ARABIA
Christian Filipino migrants forced to convert to Islam
by Santosh Digal
09/03/2010 SRI LANKA - SAUDI ARABIA
Colombo activists and religious leaders call for end to abuse of migrants in Saudi Arabia
by Melani Manel Perera
02/11/2011 SRI LANKA
Religious sisters: government ineffective on violence against migrant women
by Melani Manel Perera
03/17/2012 SAUDI ARABIA - PHILIPPINES
Saudi Arabia, 70% of Filipino domestic workers suffer physical and psychological violence
10/07/2010 PHILIPPINES - SAUDI ARABIA
Saudi Arabia: conditional release for 12 Filipinos accused of proselytizing

Editor's choices
IRAQ – EUROPE
For Baghdad archbishop, the persecution of Christians is the product of fundamentalism and international political calculations
by Jean Benjamin Sleiman*Some people carry out persecution; others, unseen, order it, guided by political projects that are not just the product of religious intolerance. In a speech the European Parliament, the Archbishop of Baghdad of the Latins, Mgr Sleiman, said that the violence against Christians reflects plans to break up Iraq and the Middle East. The violence must stop; Christians should become full citizens; the state should guarantee coexistence.
ISLAM - MIDDLE EAST
Al Azhar and Vatican against terrorism. The ambiguity of the international community
by Bernardo CervelleraThe influential Sunni university denounces " heinous" violence of the Islamic state and demands the world defeat this group “through every possible means". Vatican: terrorism is a threat to all humanity. France claims to fight terrorism, but then sells weapons, aircraft, helicopter gunships to Saudi Arabia, which supports Islamic fundamentalism. Kuwait tolerates Salafis who support the Nusra Front and the Islamic state. Turkey against the Kurds; the United States against Iran, Russia and China.
TUNISIA - ISLAM
Tunis, stop terrorism by closing fundamentalist mosquesPresident Essebsi believes unified and global strategy needed to counter terrorism. The attack in Sousse almost simultaneous with those in France, Kuwait, Somalia. Islamic State claims responsibility.

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