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VietNamNews

Vietnamese workers stuck in Saudi Arabia

Update: December, 12/2014 - 08:58
Vietnam has nearly 1.6 thousand workers are working in Saudi Arabia in construction, mining and processing of oil and gas.— Photo constructionweekonline.com

BAC KAN (VNS) — Twenty-five Vietnamese workers are currently stuck in Saudi Arabia because they lack work permits or the financial means to leave the country, according to Ly Thai Hai, chairman of the Bac Kan People's Committee.

Thang Long International Cooperation and Investment JSC (Thang Long OSC) sent 38 workers to the country in 2013 and 2014 as part of a poverty reduction programme funded by the Viet Nam Bank for Social Policies. However, 17 of them lack work permits and cannot obtain exit visas.

Eight others have work permits but no jobs, so they cannot afford tickets home.

The workers, most of whom come from Pac Nam in the northern mountainous province of Bac Kan, posted a video on Facebook to ask for help. Cramped in a small room, they say in the video that they are so desperate they have to go through garbage bins to find things to sell in order to survive.

They also assert that Thang Long OSC promised they could go home on October 30.

Weeks past the date, the workers have run out of money and share bunk beds.

"Sometimes we have to go without food for days. We are hungry and we just want to go home. Please bring us home," one man says in the video.

Thang Long OSC explained that the workers cannot leave because they do not possess work permits, so they cannot get the required exit visas, said Hoang Kim Hong, Pac Nam Party Committee secretary.

Hoang A Dua, the wife of one of the workers, said she had not received any money from her husband, who had been gone for eight months, because a work permit was also needed to send wages home.

However, what she wanted the most was for her husband to return.

The Bac Kan People's Committee requested assistance from Thang Long OSC, the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs and the Immigration Office to bring the workers home. — VNS



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