Kuwait condemns Manila ban on Filipino workers

Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah Al Khalid Al Sabah condemned a call by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to evacuate his country’s workers from Kuwait, suggesting it could damage ties between the two countries. (AP)
Updated 13 February 2018
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Kuwait condemns Manila ban on Filipino workers

KUWAIT CITY: Kuwait’s foreign minister on Tuesday condemned what he called an “escalation” by Manila after the Philippines expanded a ban on its nationals working in Kuwait.
Manila on Monday announced a “total ban” on new employment in Kuwait, including Filipinos who had already obtained employment permits but had not yet left for the Gulf country.
The measure came after President Rodrigo Duterte angrily lashed out at Kuwait over reports of Filipino workers suffering abuse and exploitation.
“This escalation will not serve the relationship between Kuwait and the Philippines,” Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Sabah told reporters in Kuwait City.
“We condemn the statements of the Philippine president, especially since we are in contact with the Philippines at the highest level to fully explain the state of the Filipino workforce in Kuwait,” he said.
Authorities say 252,000 Filipinos work in Kuwait, many as maids. They are among over two million employed in the region, whose remittances are a lifeline to the Philippine economy.
Domestic workers in Kuwait are not covered by ordinary labor legislation.
Human Rights Watch and other rights groups have documented widespread abuses and no clear channels for redress.
The Philippine foreign affairs department said Monday authorities were repatriating 10,000 overstaying Filipinos from Kuwait, taking advantage of an amnesty program arranged with the Kuwaiti government.
Officials added they were eyeing China and Russia as “alternative markets” for overseas workers.


Reducing Iran’s oil exports to zero is a ‘political bluff’ by US -official

Updated 17 October 2018
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Reducing Iran’s oil exports to zero is a ‘political bluff’ by US -official

  • US administration has been pushing its allies to cut Iranian oil imports
  • US sanctions on Iranian oil exports are due to kick in on Nov. 4

A claim by the United States to reduce Iran’s oil exports to zero is a “political bluff” the head of the state-run National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), Ali Kardor, was quoted as saying by the Tasnim news agency on Wednesday.
US officials have said they aim to reduce Iran’s oil exports to zero in an effort to force its leaders to change their behavior in the region. US sanctions on Iranian oil exports are due to kick in on Nov. 4.
“[US President Donald] Trump started efforts to reduce Iran’s oil exports from months ago and it’s not like we should think that he will do something special on November fourth,” Kardor said. “The president of America has done whatever he can and he knows very well that getting Iran’s oil exports to zero was a political bluff.”
The US administration has been pushing its allies to cut Iranian oil imports and encouraging Saudi Arabia, other OPEC states and Russia to pump more oil to meet any shortfall.