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Over 3000 migrant workers arrested in the UAE

On July 10, 2008

Last Friday, over 3,000 migran workers at a factory in the Emirati city of Ras Al Khaimah were detained for rioting. The workers, incited by the poor quality of food they were provided with, wreaked havoc in the factory and burnt nearby vehicles, before riot police were brought in from the nearby Emirate of Dubai.

Although not all workers at the factory were involved in the riot, they were all detained an an undisclosed location. Their fate remains unknown, but sources in the UAE have stated that they face imprisonment and deportation.

The situation of migrant workers in the UAE and the Gulf in general is tragic, with death and violent abuse being a common occurrence. In 2006, Human Rights Watch published a report documenting the exploitation of migrant workers in the UAE, but sadly, none of its recommendations have been implemented by the government.