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Posted On: 17 June 2009 08:54 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:09 pm

Low-income workers to be part of rights report

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Qatar said yesterday it will include low-income foreign workers in its report on the human rights situation in the country to be presented at a key United Nations (UN) forum early next year. A top official from the foreign ministry who is in-charge of a ministerial human rights division said the report will be made public before it is tabled at the UN conference in Geneva, Switzerland. A panel of experts is being set up that will defend the report at the UN forum and answer questions from world representatives. Member-countries of the UN are required to prepare human rights reports in their territories every four years and present them at the UN forum. The next forum is slated to be held in February 2010. “Yes, we will include lowly-paid foreign workers in our report and we will also make it public before presenting it. We will put it on our website,” said Sheikh Khalid bin Jassem Al Thani, Director of Human Rights at the Foreign Ministry, replying to a question at a news conference. The National Human Rights Committee (NHRC), which is preparing the report, has set up three sub-committees. Members of one of them, called the ‘consultative and public relations panel’, will contact the judicial, legal and administrative authorities as well as different government agencies and NGOs to collect relevant data to prepare the report. The other panels will include the ‘defence’ team of experts and the report writing team. A more reader-friendly website is being launched, which could be used by the aggrieved to lodge complaints with the NHRC, and a 24-hour hotline is being established, officials said. Aside from Sheikh Khalid, present at the press briefing were Lieutenant-Colonel Abdullah Saqr Al Mohannadi from the human rights section at the Ministry of Interior, Dr Fareeda Al Obaidly from the Qatar Foundation for the Protection of Women and Children, and Dr Hamda Al Sulaiti from the Supreme Education Council.