Poverty exists in Saudi Arabia too
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The cliché of Saudi Arabia is that everybody drives around in Jaguars and spends their holidays at five star hotels in Beirut. But as this video proves, in the dark depths of the world's petrol state, poverty is lurking. Read more and see the video.
The cliché of Saudi Arabia is that everybody drives around in Jaguars and spends their holidays at five star hotels in Beirut. But as this video proves, in the dark depths of the world's petrol state, poverty is lurking.
Subtitled by Team Observers, France 24. Original video here.
Trad Alasmari put this video on YouTube in protest over poverty in his country. The short documentary starts with the interview of a Saudi security guard who earns no more than 1000 Riyals a month [€200]. The video's already been picked up by various Arabic media sites and fuelled hundreds of comments on YouTube. The blogger took the initiative after the president of the country's human rights commission announced that the problem of poverty was a "minor" one and only found in "isolated pockets".
Saudi Arabia is the world's biggest oil producer. And yet, banks in the country estimate that the unemployment rate is around 13% - and even that figure is an underestimation, say many bloggers.
Our Observers in Saudi Arabia prefer to remain anonymous.
"The politicians in charge hardly do anything"
Loujiane is a 19-year-old student.
I'm outraged by the poverty in my country - especially as it's one of the richest states in the world! This video, which has been going round the Web for a while, doesn't shock me at all. Recently, talking about poverty has become very fashionable. One of the dailies prints an account of a poor person's problems each day. The subject's not taboo anymore, but a lot of people have the idea that the politicians in charge hardly do anything to fix the problem. They're content just talking about it."
"We use water from the toilet to heat up the dinner"Haya is a cleaner in a girls' school in Riyadh.
Both me and my husband work in schools. He's a watchman and I'm a cleaner. We live in a two-room apartment with our four children, my mother-in-law and my two brothers-in-law. We have no kitchen and use water from the toilet to heat up the dinner. Only god can get us out of this situation."