Migrant workers in the Gulf region and neighboring countries have been subjected to fierce campaigns calling for their deportation that is riddled with racist speeches and hatred. They have been left alone to face the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic with no access to medical care or unions, according to research by the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR).
Over the years, migrant workers in Lebanon, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar and Bahrain have been subjected to massive human rights violations through the notorious kafala (sponsorship) system that strips them of their basic civil and human rights. They lack the right to move, travel or change work, the right to health care and the right to union representation or formation of organisations. In addition, migrant workers are denied the right to citizenship — even if they spend their whole lives working in these countries.