- Posted September 30, 2013 by
Qatar Deportation Jail
The Qatar Deportation Jail is located on the out skirts of the city of Doha on Salwa Road and tucked in behind the Search and Follow up Department. One would think the objective of a deportation center is to “deport” as quickly as possible. But that is not the case in Qatar’s Deportation Center. Men and woman can sit detained in this jail for months and some over a year. Let’s first remember that the vast majority of these men and woman are not criminals. They are clearly victims of a sponsorship system that is not only abusive but is modern day slavery – that is alive and well in 2013 in Qatar.
Here is a Government run facility that is no better than the labor accommodations you will find in Saniya. About a 1000 woman are stacked into an area that is maybe 2000 square feet. There is one public telephone and about 10 washrooms. There is so little room that woman are sleeping in the hallway on mattresses or mattresses are put under the beds to accommodate more human bodies. You will easily find 2-3 woman sleeping to each single mattress. A jail is not a place you would think to see babies. But there are babies there also. Aside from the sleeping area, where the woman are locked in, there is a small area where the food is brought to each day. There are no fire extinguishers and certainly no way out except through the locked door to the sleeping area. The woman are left to sit day and night, weeks and months with absolutely nothing to do but wait.
The Police Woman sit in a little room to the side and could not be bothered with the woman. The Police Woman have no other form of communication but shouting. In a bad mood, the woman risk being slapped or their breasts grabbed. One must wonder who is more educated – the House Maid or the Police Officer. Aside from three meals a day, the woman must provide basic necessities for themselves. Exactly how these woman are suppose to buy soap and other toiletries is beyond me. They are poor and have no money. For those woman that can buy these items, there is an air of sharing and compassion to help each other through this nightmare. And if you don’t have money to purchase a Q-Card, forget being able to use the one available public telephone.
Why are these woman being detained in deportation:
Some were beaten, abused, raped and/or not paid by their sponsors. In desperate situations, they ran away (absconded) and later picked up by the police;
Some were simply not liked by their sponsors so they were sent to deportation. Or the females in the sponsors house were jealous;
Nadia is being held there with no charges or problems with her Qatar ID, just an angry Sheikh that is upset over his marriage.
Once in deportation, you will pretty much sit in limbo, hoping your sponsor is reasonable, which seems to rarely be the case, hence you must plan to spend months there. The sponsors seem to have so much power that if they don’t feel like bringing a ticket, they don’t have too and can leave you to sit in this jail as a form of punishment. What is very disturbing is that the Police seem to have no power over their people or the law. Sometimes the only way out of their is for these poor woman to find a way to raise money for their ticket. Why are these sponsors not being held accountable for their behavior and actions?
The woman are not only left in a hopeless situation, but they have no rights either. Simply take a walk around the offices of the Deportation Center and you will find there is no sense of urgency to work through the thousands of men and woman’s files. One would think they would at least notify embassies that they are detaining their citizen’s, but that too is rarely the case. Some people are left there and no one on the outside world even knows they are there. We would also think that the detainees are updated or notified about their cases, but that is definitely not the case. And they have no right to ask about their case either.
Don’t for one minute believe that these people are being treated fairly and not like criminals and animals. Don’t for one minute think that this jail is safe, humane and decent. Don’t believe that these sponsors do not have total power to punish another human being. Try to get a visit inside the deportation jail to see for yourself and surely you will be denied. Where is the National Human Rights Committee and why are they not taking action?
Let us all remember that it is these people- these workers being detained - that Qatar is building their Nation and FIFA on!
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