Kuwait police break up demo by Asian workers



The incident occurred in Jelib al-Shuyukh, northwest of Kuwait City, scene of one of two protests near the capital involving hundreds of Bangladeshi workers demanding better pay and living conditions.



The second protest took place in Mahbulah, south of Kuwait City, witnesses said, without specifying if there had been any police intervention.



The government, in a statement issued after a meeting, pledged to ensure that "contracts made between companies and workers are honoured," and that it will back the "just demands" of workers, according to KUNA state news agency.



However, the government warned that it "will not tolerate disturbances and chaos caused by any group of people," adding that those who instigated trouble will be deported.



In May the Kuwaiti interior ministry warned that it will deport foreigners who instigate gatherings and strikes and will arrest and prosecute the participants.



About 200,000 Bangladeshis work in Kuwait, mostly as cleaners and in other low-paid jobs.



Hundreds have gone on strike in recent months complaining of non-payment of salaries or delays in obtaining their wages as well as inhuman working conditions.



They have also charged that they are receiving half of the 200-dollar monthly salary promised them in Bangladesh before arriving in Kuwait.


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