The ISF cybercrime bureau summoned activist Doumit Azzi Draiby following a complaint submitted by the mayor of Jourit Al Ballout, Issam Bou Jaoude, on Monday, January 10th.
Bou Jaoude filed the complaint against Azzi for a tweet in which Azzi expressed his outrage at the mayor’s justification of the violent behavior of an employer dragging his house helper by the hair in Jourit Al Ballout.
The incident sparked outrage on social media when the video went viral showing the violence, including the man hitting the domestic worker on her face.
Viewer Discretion Advised.
The mayor tweeted in response, explaining that “the helper tried to escape the same night she came to the house of the man.”
Public reactions were many, as there’s no justification for violence, especially against a woman in a vulnerable position like a migrant worker.
Doumit Draiby was among those who raised their voices to express their outrage. He responded to the Mayor’s tweet with the following:
“The mayor of Jourit Al Balout justifies the detention and beating of a person in the case of the foreign worker that appeared in the video! In a normal country, a mayor position does not exist at all, but in Lebanon, the regime wants to give false value to the likes of Issam Bou Jaoude.”
The employer, Beshara Ghostine, was arrested and taken to investigation yet he was released just a day later after paying a fine. The migrant worker had to sign a waiver and was asked to leave back to her home country.
According to the authorities, “the case is over.”
But it isn’t and it won’t as long as the Kafala system continues its destructive enabling of violence and abuse of migrant workers, which it forces into a most vulnerable status.
That system of modern slavery gives employers full authority over their employees and leeway to mistreat and ill-treat them without persecution.
Activism efforts to pressure the state to eradicate the Kafala have been numerous and continuous yet the rightful voice of the activists remains a faint echo in the consciousness of the lawmakers.