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Sri Lanka to ban maids going to Saudi Arabia

Sri Lanka to ban maids going to Saudi Arabia Fri, 25 Jan, 2013

Sri Lanka will gradually stop allowing women to work as housemaids in Saudi Arabia after a Sri Lankan was executed in the country over the death of an infant in her care, the Colombo government said.

The government said it would raise the minimum age for female domestic workers to be eligible to seek employment in Saudi Arabia to 25 years from the present 21 with an eye on eventually stopping such employment altogether.

"Gradual phase-out is the idea," government spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella said. "We can't stop it overnight. It's a gradual process and increasing the age limit is part of that."

Sri Lanka extends police detention of suspects amid protests

Sri Lanka extends police detention of suspects amid protests Fri, 25 Jan, 2013

Rights groups assert that Sri Lanka, which has a long history of police impunity, of continuing to violate human rights despite the end of a three-decade-long war with Tamil Tiger separatists in May 2009.

Police in the South Asian nation previously could detain suspects without charge for 24 hours.

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