Saudi couple "hammer 24 nails" into Sri Lankan maid

COLOMBO Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:14am EDT

An x-ray shows nails in a hand of L.T. Ariyawathi, 49, who returned to Sri Lanka after 5 months as a maid in Saudi Arabia, in a hospital in Matara, 160 km (100 miles) south of Colombo, August 26, 2010. A Saudi couple tortured Ariyawathi after she complained of a too heavy workload by hammering 24 nails into her hands, legs and forehead, officials said on Thursday. Nearly 2 million Sri Lankans sought employment overseas last year and around 1.4 million, mostly maids, were employed in the Middle East. Many have complained of physical abuse or harassment. REUTERS/Stringer

An x-ray shows nails in a hand of L.T. Ariyawathi, 49, who returned to Sri Lanka after 5 months as a maid in Saudi Arabia, in a hospital in Matara, 160 km (100 miles) south of Colombo, August 26, 2010. A Saudi couple tortured Ariyawathi after she complained of a too heavy workload by hammering 24 nails into her hands, legs and forehead, officials said on Thursday. Nearly 2 million Sri Lankans sought employment overseas last year and around 1.4 million, mostly maids, were employed in the Middle East. Many have complained of physical abuse or harassment.

Credit: Reuters/Stringer

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COLOMBO (Reuters) - A Saudi couple tortured their Sri Lankan maid after she complained of a too heavy workload by hammering 24 nails into her hands, legs and forehead, officials said on Thursday.

Nearly 2 million Sri Lankans sought employment overseas last year and around 1.4 million, mostly maids, were employed in the Middle East. Many have complained of physical abuse or harassment.

L.T. Ariyawathi, a 49-year old mother of three, returned on Friday after five months in Saudi Arabia.

Her family only realized what had happened to her when she complained of pain and they took her to see the doctor, Foreign Employment Bureau officials said.

"The landlord and the wife of the landlord hammered 24 nails into her when she complained of the heavy workload," Kalyana Priya Ramanayake, media secretary of the Foreign Employment Bureau, told Reuters.

Ariyawathi has been taken to hospital for surgery to remove the nails, which according to the maid were hammered in when they were hot.

X-rays showed one- to two-inch nails in her hands and legs, with one over her eyes, officials said.

The Foreign Employment Bureau is consulting the Attorney-General while the Sri Lankan External Affairs Ministry is to take the matter up with the Saudi government, officials said.

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal; Writing by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Nick Macfie)

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Comments (49)
mnhsty wrote:
Everyone: Grow up. This has nothing to do with their being nominally Muslim or not. It has to do with the human condition. By analogy with your comments, commenters in Muslim countries could consider Charles Manson or John Wayne Gacy an example of what is wrong with Christianity and Christians. How does that make any sense?

Aug 26, 2010 9:41am EDT  --  Report as abuse
eventsdo wrote:
How does it go…oh yes..An eye for an eye.

If it was up to me they would persecuted even more as this woman was well within her rights to convey her own opinion.

Aug 26, 2010 9:50am EDT  --  Report as abuse
jimwa9z wrote:
When it came down to the last two species of humans left on the planet, beastly and savage Neanderthal Man was eventually slaughtered, giving way to homosapien as modern man.

Aug 26, 2010 9:55am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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