Thursday, November 29, 2007

HRC: Kingdom to Change Sponsorship Law Soon

by Raid Qusti from Arab News (Saudi Arabia)

“There is an initiative to begin studies (into a system) where private companies will import foreign labor… Communication, hence, would be between citizens, who are in need of foreign labor, and these private companies,” HRC President Turki Al-Sudairi said in an interview with Arab News, the first ever by a Saudi daily. Al-Sudairi said he supports the change in law, which would bring an end to the existence of sponsors. “I support it. I think it would be better and easier for laborers and for the country,” he said ... The top HRC official said that the Ministry of Labor said that incidents of Saudi sponsors mistreating foreign laborers in the Kingdom, as highlighted by foreign organizations, do not mean mistreatment is rampant or widespread. “If things were as bad as foreign organizations say, then why would people be anxious to come here to work? They would run away. What is true is the contrary that the general atmosphere of work here is good,” he said. Al-Sudairi ... The HRC official noted that many reports on Saudi Arabia by international human rights organizations were exaggerated and contained many misconceptions. He particularly mentioned a US State Department for Religious Freedom report on Saudi Arabia. “It is obvious that the original status of this country, Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam and the land of the Two Holy Mosques, is not clear to them,” he said, adding that the Kingdom’s religious nature could not be compared to other countries in terms of building public places of worship such as churches ... Regarding the negative aspects mentioned in some reports by international human rights bodies, the HRC official said that the Saudi human rights body “would seek to correct whatever is untrue in the reports.”

No comments: