Indonesian Maid Beheaded In Saudi Arabia

Ruyati binti Sapubi, 54, an Indonesian maid working in Saudi Arabia, was beheaded last Saturday, June 18, after confessing to killing her employer, saying he had abused her.

Saudi Arabia has not yet released any official comment on the incident. But according to the BBC,, Indonesian foreign ministry spokesman Michael Tene told journalists on Wednesday: “The ambassador apologised and regretted the situation and said that such a thing wouldn’t happen again.”

The Ambassador Apologized For The Beheading?

“Such a thing?” A beheading? An execution without prior notice? Or the appalling abandonment of any pretense at justice?
The execution has understandably caused an outcry in Indonesia, which only recently resumed sending workers to Malaysia, after a row over the abuse of maids there led to a two-year suspension in the practice.

Moratorium On Indonesians Working As Domestic Servants In Saudi Arabia

Now Indonesia will stop allowing its citizens to work as domestic servants in Saudi Arabia. A moratorium will begin on August 1 and last until the two countries can agree on a policy of fair treatment for migrant workers. About 1.5 million Indonesians work in Saudi Arabia – many of them as domestic maids.

From the BBC:

Indonesian labour ministry spokeswoman Dita Indah Sari said the department would work closely with other government agencies on tightening all regulations concerning overseas domestic work.
Extra measures would be put in place to ensure no-one travelled to Saudi Arabia to take up domestic employment during the moratorium period, with more officials posted at borders and airports.
“We do not want to see any illegal recruitments during this period,” she said. “We will set up a special task force whose job is to make sure there are no Indonesian workers heading for Saudi when the moratorium is in place.”

This Is Not The First Time
Last April, Indonesia condemned the overturning of a Saudi woman’s conviction and three-year prison sentence for beating and torturing her Indonesian maid.

A number of other cases of abuse of migrant domestic workers have come to light in Saudi Arabia over recent years.
And in case you think it’s only Indonesian women in Saudi Arabia who are exploited, check out this Care2 story about the 70,000 foreign workers hired by the Pentagon, and how they are treated.

Photo Credit: Adam Jones, Ph.D. via Creative Commons
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Gysele van Santen

i wish i'd seen this in June 2011 when it was posted, i had no idea. it's sickening what happened to her.

Ken O.
Ken O4 years ago

Sorry Siti, but you need to wake up. Islam IS this.

Karen Gee4 years ago

Thank you for sharing

Karen F.
Karen F4 years ago

I hate to see women from ANY country; working in what could be considered subservient positions, in ANY other country that is foreign to them. I think it only adds to and exacerbates the notion that they can be treated in deplorable ways as they so often are. A woman is really at a TOTAL loss of power when you consider being without a good grasp of the customs, prevailing attitudes towards servants, in general... and then, adding a lack of a good grasp on the language skills in a foreign country... how CAN she be safe from abuse? She becomes the proverbial "sitting duck" and at the mercy of random luck of the draw as to where she ends up. Bad enough to be treated like shit in her own country... worse to be treated that way when alone and so far from home.

Linda Barnett
Linda Barnett4 years ago

Saudi Arabia's actions are questionable! This poor victim had every right to take her chosen action against her abuser. She knew the risk that she was taking, but that was her choice. In any other civilised country she would have received a prison sentence, not lose her life!

ali a.
ali a4 years ago

It is a shame.

Siti R.
Siti R4 years ago

human rights violations are rife everywhere. some don't get their 15 minutes. our condolences and sympathies to those lives affected and left behind. am not fond of Saudi Arabia policy for the longest time. Islam is not this!!!

Vivianne Mosca-Clark

ALL people need to live with justice and dignity. All means all not just some.........

Pogle S.
Pogle S4 years ago

Just exercising their 'god given' rights no doubt ;-(

Lorna C.
Lorna C4 years ago

Sickening :@(