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22 Sep 2021


“We cried and begged” UAE tramples on the hopes, dignity, and rights of African migrant workers

UAE unlawfully detains hundreds of African migrant workers

On 24 and 25 June 2021, Abu Dhabi authorities conducted midnight raids on several apartments housing African migrant workers. An estimated 800 workers, primarily from Uganda, Nigeria, and Cameroon, were rounded up – most in their bedclothes, some even naked – and put onto buses without explanation.

In the audio story above, John* recounts the horrific night in painstaking detail. A security guard for nearly eight years, John’s visa and work permits were valid. He had never committed a crime. Yet, he was detained for two months. Some migrants were undocumented, and others on visit visas – legal under UAE laws – and they were reportedly deported first. But many, like John, had valid documentation and were actively employed.