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Weekly News Report: September 21-27, 2020

Cameroonian women protesting outside the consulate on September 25, 2020

Articles and views shared in the Weekly News Report do not represent ARM’s views. Information in these articles has not been fact-checked by ARM and may contain some errors. ARM is simply compiling all news relevant to migrant communities to inform our advocacy efforts and to facilitate the work of organizations who cater to migrant communities.

Evacuation Updates

Cameroonian women yet to hear back from consulate [source is ARM]

On September 22, ARM met with a number of Cameroonian women to get updates on their situation and discuss ways forward for support. A letter was sent to the consul upon his request by ARM, the Cameroonian community, and “Help Them Home” asking for the list of names sent by the consulate to the General Security for exit clearance along with the submission dates. We are yet to receive a reply from the consulate.

ARM then sent a letter to the Cameroonian ambassador in Egypt requesting to speed up the process of issuing the laissez-passer documents for the women given the urgency of the situation in Lebanon.

Ivorian women yet to receive any updates [source is ARM]

On September 25, ARM met with Ivorian women to discuss ways forward given the lack of response by the embassy concerning their evacuation. ARM learned from the women that the ticket costs around 650 USD and the embassy said they cannot fund tickets.

Context: The Ivorian women had sent a letter on May 19 to the ambassador requesting to be evacuated, along with their names and numbers. They are yet to receive updates from the embassy.

Sri Lankan workers evacuated [here]

The embassy of Sri Lanka announced that a group of 287 Sri Lankans were evacuated from Lebanon yesterday September 27, including workers who had been affected by the economic crisis. Penalty fees were waived for 45 undocumented workers.

Other

Migrant worker’s belongings stolen in Sour [here]

An Ethiopian worker’s luggage and belongings were stolen by a cab driver in Sour after she left the cab for a few minutes, while on her way to her employer with whom she was supposed to go to the airport to travel.

Ethiopian President addresses Lebanese President for unpaid wages [here]

The Ethiopian President sent a letter to Lebanese President Michel Aoun requesting his cooperation to retrieve the unpaid wages for Ethiopians workers, especially so that they can pay for tickets to go back to Ethiopia.

Report on Kafala by Vice News [here]

A report by Vice News on the Kafala system in Lebanon included an interview with the advisor of the Minister of Labor who noted the lack of protective legislation was an obstacle. She added that the ministry’s priority was to abolish Kafala and to allow all migrant workers to demand their rights.

An owner of a recruitment agency was featured and noted that before the crisis, all employers used to pay their dues to migrant domestic workers; adding that the crisis caused the exceptional situation of unpaid wages and that the problem is not related to Kafala.

Also featured are Egna Legna and the Sierra Leonean group.