[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Friday, 13 May, 2005, 01:36 GMT 02:36 UK
'Tortured' maid charged by Saudis
By Paul Wood
BBC News, Riyadh

Saudi street scene
Many Saudis are incredulous at the new twist
There is controversy in Saudi Arabia over the treatment of a foreign maid who accused her employers of torture.

The most serious charges against the man and woman for whom she worked have now been dropped while the maid is accused of making false allegations.

The 25-year-old maid, Nour Miyati, from Indonesia was sent to hospital with gangrene saying she had been tied up for a month and left without food.

But Saudi authorities have charged her with making false allegations.

They also claim she has now withdrawn part of her original statement.

The most serious charges against the Saudi couple have been dropped although they could still be prosecuted for neglect and the wife for assault.

Nour Miyati had to have several fingers amputated.

She said the Saudi couple who employed her had bound her hand and foot and left her on a bathroom floor for a month without food.

She also said the wife had accused her of dressing immodestly around the house and had beaten her with a shoe knocking out several teeth.


But after a newspaper showed the maid black and blue, with bandaged hands, the authorities launched an investigation.

That has now concluded the gangrene came from an existing but unspecified disease but other injuries were caused by cleaning fluids used in the maid's work and that the bruising was self-inflicted or caused by a falling wardrobe.

Nour Miyati has now been charged with making false allegations.

Some Saudis are incredulous at all this.

Internet chatrooms reflect their belief that such abuse of domestic servants is widespread and part of a wider human rights problem in the kingdom.

Certainly being a maid in Saudi Arabia is not a low-risk occupation.

Last year, for instance, the Indonesian embassy alone received more than 800 complaints of torture.

It has asked for a fresh inquiry into the Miyati case and in the meantime is banning any new recruitment of maids from Indonesia to Saudi Arabia.

Saudi arrested for abusing maid
01 Apr 05 |  Middle East
Saudi system 'abuses foreigners'
15 Jul 04 |  Middle East
Princess fined over assault claim
03 Jul 02 |  Americas
Country profile: Saudi Arabia
30 Mar 05 |  Country profiles

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific