UAE compensates 879 Bangladeshi camel jockeys

May 5th, 2009 - 11:03 pm ICT by IANS  

Dhaka, May 5 (DPA) The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Tuesday handed over to Dhaka compensation worth $1.43 million for 879 Bangladeshi children who once had been used as camel jockeys in the Gulf kingdom.
A UAE government delegation called on Bangladesh Home Minister Sahara Khatun and handed over to her the compensation package, a home ministry official said.

The victims will receive between $1,000 and $10,000 each in June, with the money to be handed over by district administrations, Khatun told reporters after the meeting.

The money will be spent for the education, treatment and housing of the children who were once trafficked to the Gulf country and returned home in phases in the last decade as a result of vigorous anti-trafficking campaign around the world and Bangladesh’s own efforts against human trafficking, she said.

According to available statistics, a total of 906 children claiming to have worked as camel jockeys in the UAE between Jan 1, 1993 and Jan 21, 2008 applied for the compensation.

Of these, 879 were found eligible for compensation while the rest failed to provide enough evidence or did not match criteria such as age limit and the time of their return home.

Khatun said Dhaka was taking steps to ensure that children are not used in dangerous assignments like working as camel jockeys.

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