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Bahraini parliament moves to segregate migrants from citizens

On April 28, 2007

The Bahrain Centre for Human Rights has expressed its alarm at new efforts in the Bahraini parliament to impose segregation on migrant workers by mandating, by law, that unmarried migrant workers be barred from living in residential areas, meaning that they would have to live in shanty towns and labour camps in industrial areas that are not conducive to a healthy or normal lifestyle. one claim made byMP Nasser Fadhala to justify the law was that "bachelors use these houses to make alcohol, run prostitute rings or to rape children and housemaids."

Here is an excerpt from BCHR's press release on the issue:

It is a disgrace, and extremely irresponsible for an elected leader and religious figure to promote racial hatred, and to encourage the vilification of an entire community of people. "It is appalling that Bahrain is willing to rest on the benefits of these people's hard work, and often their suffering, but that they refuse to live with them in equality and dignity," BCHR vice president Nabeel Rajab said. "The solution is not to force migrant workers into ghettos, but to urge companies to improve living conditions for workers - and not to accomodate large numbers of workers in inadequate space, and the improve the standard of living for them.