Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Saudi Arabia and the Servant Problem

This is - unexpected. And welcome news.
"Reports: Woman gets three years for abusing Indonesian maid"
CNN World (January 12, 2011)

"In what some say is a first for the kingdom, a Saudi woman has been sentenced to three years in prison for abusing her Indonesian maid, according to Saudi media reports.

"The woman was sentenced Sunday in Medina, the reports said. According to Saudi Arabian daily newspaper Al-Watan, the employer, who was not named, was sentenced under a new royal decree issued to combat human trafficking.

"The maid, Sumiati binti Mustapha Salan, 23, was hospitalized in November after being severely beaten. At the time, a migrant rights group and Indonesian officials told CNN that she had suffered cuts to her face and was also burned, possibly with an iron. The case, which outraged many in Indonesia, also brought international attention to an issue that has repeatedly made headlines in recent months -- the abuse of migrant workers in Middle Eastern nations...."
I'd be even more impressed if a man had been sentenced for this sort of crime: but this is a step in the right direction, in my opinion.

I'm not the House of Saud's biggest fan: but I've got a little sympathy for the folks living in Saudi Arabia who seem to be trying to reconcile the values and assumptions of a culture that was old when Abram moved out of Ur with an Information Age global society.

I also think that some critics of Saudi leadership have a point. It's likely, in my opinion, that the House of Saud wouldn't be addressing their culture's quaint methods of dealing with servants, if "international outrage," as the article put it, wasn't happening.

Related posts:In the news:


Brigid said...

Wait. What? "I also think that the folks who assert that the House of Saud wouldn't be addressing their culture's quaint methods of dealing with servants, if "international outrage," as the article put it, wasn't happening."

Brian H. Gill said...


That's a rather convoluted sentence, now that I re-read it.

I'll see what I can do to break it into more workable pieces.

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