Monday, May 26, 2008

"Human rights groups have for years decried the harsh conditions of foreign laborers in Dubai and the rest of the United Arab Emirates and oil-rich Persian Gulf. But the problem only drew widespread attention after strikes by thousands of workers this year and last. Some recent protests turned violent; in mid-March, police arrested at least 500 South Asian workers who smashed office windows and set cars ablaze in the small, neighboring emirate of Sharjah. Dubai officials were embarrassed by the bad press in a city that advertises itself as a world business hub, playground for the rich and home to major horse races and golf and tennis tournaments. But despite promises of reform, there are still problems, The Associated Press found in interviews with government officials and two dozen workers and visits to employer-provided housing:" (thanks John)