My parents, both full time workers, it was difficult for them to raise 2 children on their own. Thus, in 2005 (I was 2 years old my brother was a couple of months old), Didi (the nanny) became part of our family. She was a filipino in her early twenties who came here to support her family financially.
Dodging pulped food and glass shards, I walk the narrow and winding streets of Beirut up a hill in Hamra, one of the city’s main commercial districts, to the Q Hotel, with its crumbling sign and exposed brick façade. I make my way to the third floor, room 304, where, between ancient cupboards and worn carpets, time seems to have stopped in the 1950s. Mariema — her back hunched, her blue shirt sagging, her face hollow — is lying on a bed with its crumpled sheet on the floor.
Eccoli lì, in tanti, una moltitudine. Sono stremati, dopo un lungo turno di lavoro e ore di protesta. Aspettano una decisione della monarchia araba che possa cambiare la loro vita, togliendo loro le moderne catene della schiavitù – che non sono di metallo, ma di burocrazia. Vengono da tutto il mondo, specialmente dall’Asia e dell’Africa. Tutti con il giubbotto arancione, che applaudono felici. Non sono tifosi ad una partita di calcio. Sono gli schiavi della Kafala che, a Doha ricevono la notizia che la legge sia stata riformata. Nei Paesi del Golfo Persico abitano circa 18 milioni di immigrati ufficiali su una popolazione totale di 42 milioni. Sono loro che si rallegrano per le riforme concesse dalle monarchie assolute dei paesi arabi.
What does it mean to exist in public and private space with our own free thoughts, inclinations, and expressions, without society and its laws forcing us to follow normative patterns in gender existence? Zahraa, my friend, wondered out loud during a private conversation between the two of us, adding: If society had not forced us to all this, would we have perhaps really known the true meaning of love — and what it means to love freely? Would we have been able to exist within our own complete selves? Ever since, her question has haunted me and occupied a large portion of my mind.
Son mujeres valientes porque, a pesar de vivir en una sociedad dominada por las leyes de un sistema islámico patriarcal que las maltrata, las viola, las vende, las esclaviza o las mata, saben cómo organizarse para luchar por su libertad. Un machismo violento y mortal en pleno siglo XXI que combaten con conocimiento, armas, arte y redes de apoyo clandestinas.
French prosecutors have said they are investigating claims that a Saudi prince kept seven employees in a state of modern-day slavery at an apartment he owned outside of Paris.
The Le Parisien newspaper reported on Monday that an inquiry for human trafficking was opened after the women, most from the Philippines, filed complaints of modern-day slavery.