Posted at 03:30 PM ET, 06/22/2011

Saudi Arabia beheading prompts Indonesia to ban workers in Saudi

The Indonesian maid who was beheaded last week. (Image from YouTube)
Indonesia will soon ban its citizens from working as domestic servants in Saudi Arabia after the beheading of a maid convicted of killing her Saudi employer with a kitchen knife last week.

The ban will take effect on Aug. 1 and stay in force until the Saudi government signs a memorandum of understanding to protect Indonesian workers’ rights, Agence France Presse reports.

The move came in the same week that Saudi women are demanding the right to drive and a hip hop song was banned in Saudi Arabia for talking about going to the mall.

Ruyati binti Satubi, 54, said she killed her employer because she was denied permission to return to Indonesia. Satubi’s family was not told about her beheading until the day after the execution, a move for which the Saudi government has apologized. Human rights activists say that Satubi may have also suffered abuse under her employer.

Roughly 1.5 million Indonesians work in Saudi Arabia, many of them as domestic maids, according to the BBC. Mistreatment of domestic servants in Saudi Arabia has been a continuing issue. This past April, a Saudi woman, convicted of beating and torturing an Indonesian maid, got her conviction appealed, sparking protests in Indonesia.

Watch Al-Jazeera’s report on the story:

By  |  03:30 PM ET, 06/22/2011

Read what others are saying

    © 2011 The Washington Post Company