Statement of The National Centre For Human Rights regarding “the classic factory” in the “ Hasan Industrial Estate”

Statement of The National Centre For Human Rights regarding “the classic factory” in the “ Hasan Industrial Estate”

Governorate of Irbid

Ramtha District

The National Centre for Human Rights (NCHR) would like to stress its keenness on the continuous follow-up and supervising of the situations of all workers in the qualified industrial zones, in cooperation with all concerned authorities. In addition, the (NCHR) conducts frequent declared and undeclared visits for these zones to make sure that the workers there enjoy all their rights according to the international and domestic standards. The (NCHR) points in this connection to the report of the institute for global labour and human rights on 8 June 2011 to the effect that several violations have occurred in the “Classic Factory” in the “Hasan Industrial Estate” like raping and sexual harassment of the (female) workers, and the non-enjoyment of the workers of the factory of their labour rights. As a result, the (NCHR) formed a fact-finding team composed of experts and specialists to look into the reality of the situations of the workers in the factory.

The (NCHR) would like to state that on 16 June 2011, the representatives of the institute for global and human Rights visited the headquarters of the (NCHR) after few days of the Issuing of the report. They met with the Commissioner – General of Human Rights to discuss the contents of the repot. The Commissioner- General stated the readiness of the (NCHR) to keep in touch with the institute and asked them to provide the (NCHR) with all information and facts that validate the contents of the report. But, despite the several electronic mail messages that were sent to the institute by the fact-finding team, to provide the (NCHR) or the fact-finding team, with any information that validates the truth of the allegations, nothing was received so far, except some general information which does not amount to being considered worthy facts or information.

The information supplied by the institute was only the first names of a group of (ffmale) workers. Upon investigating these names by the fact-finding team, it became obvious that most of them were pseudonyms, while others were unreal, and one of them has left the country upon the expiration of her work contract.

The (NCHR) stresses that the fact-finding team has followed several procedural measures. These included conducting more than ten field visits to the factory and its facilities, and the individual and secret meeting with more than (150) female workers in order to guarantee that they will not be subject to danger or threats. Boards were put in places containing the hotline, land phones, and the electronic mail of the (NCHR) in the Arabic, English, Bengali, Sri Lankan and Indian languages. More than (5000) posters were printed and placed in all the facilities of the factory calling on any worker to notify the (NCHR) of any violation in the factory. It is worth mentioning that on 4 August 2011, a Bengali (female) worker came to the (NCHR) – the (NCHR) declines to reveal her name so as not to expose her to danger-. The representative of the Bengladesh Embassy was promptly notified and was asked to bring an accredited translator from the embassy. The worker gave a statement in which it said that she has received phone calls from Bengali persons inside and outside of Jordan- including from a person called Mohammad Rafeeq- urging her to file a complaint of rape and ravishment and the non-receiving of her rights from the factory… in return for financial sums of up to (5000) Jordanian dinars, travel ticket, and the wages of the remainder of her work contract. She said that these calls took place in front of the other workers, including the (female) worker “rani” who has on 17 June 2011, filed a rape complaint against the person called “aneel”. When she ( the Bengali worker) turned down the offer, “Rani” contacted those persons and filed a rape complaint unto the family protection department, and left the country on the following day, 19 June 2011, in the company of Mohammad Rafeeq who have accompanied her during all stages of filing the complaint. She added that she has received calls from Bengali workers urging her to change her testimony before the court which she has made earlier to the effect that no violations were commited against “rani” in lieu of large sums of money. The (NCHR) finds this question suspicious, and raises doubts regarding the real intentions of the afore-mentioned report. Her statement was heard and written down in the Bengali and Arabic languages. She signed it in the presence of the representative of the Bengali Embassy. Legal measures are being conducted as a result.

The (NCHR) points out that the fact-finding team is continuing its work, and is in the process of taking all the necessary procedural, preventive and legal measures to arrive at the truth. It is to be noted that the team has arrived at several facts and events that prove the incorrectness of the allegations of the institute for global labour and Human Rights, which were based on the narration of general incorrect sayings. The team has obtained evidence, facts and testimonies- that run against the contents of that report-which will be included in the report that will be issued upon its completion. The (NCHR) calls on all to make sure of the correctness of the information that is circulated or adopted… and depend only on concrete facts so as not to mislead public opinion. It is imperative that accuracy and objectivity be pursued when disseminating information so as to arrive at the truth.