Saudi Accused Of Raping Maids Leaves India Under Diplomatic Immunity

Saudi diplomat accused of raping and abusing maids in India, leaves country under cover of immunity

Diplomatic Immunity

A Saudi diplomat accused of raping two Nepalese maids in India for months, has left the country under diplomatic immunity.

The police removed Nepalese maids from the diplomat’s home last week

The two women, aged 30 and 50, accuse the man, identified as the first secretary at the Saudi Embassy in New Delhi, of illegally confining and raping them.

According to a statement by police the women allege they were beaten, raped, abused and threatened by the family and their guests for the past four to five months, adding that they were forbidden to go out of the house during this period. The maids say they were raped by eight men on one occasion

The Telegraph reports: India’s External Affairs Ministry spokesman Vikas Swarup identified the diplomat as Majed Hassan Ashoor, the first secretary at the Saudi Embassy in New Delhi. The statement late on Wednesday said Mr Ashoor, “who is allegedly accused of abusing two Nepali maids, has left India”.

It gave no details on how the diplomat left the country, but said “the first secretary, being a diplomat, is governed by the provisions of the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations.”

The two Nepalese, working as maids in the diplomat’s luxury apartment, have accused him of illegally confining and raping them during the past few months.

Police removed the women from the apartment last week after receiving a complaint from a non-governmental organization. They have since returned to Nepal.

Although a case was registered against the diplomat, police could not act against him because of diplomatic immunity.

Under the Vienna Convention, diplomats cannot be arrested or face criminal prosecution in the country where they are posted.

The Saudi Embassy has denied the allegations against the diplomat, and refused to let police question him.

An Indian official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorised to speak to the media, said Saudi Arabia decided to withdraw the diplomat and his family.

The Nepalese ambassador in New Delhi, Deep Upadhyay, told reporters that the case should be pursued even if the diplomat had left the country. “The victims must get justice,” he said on Thursday.

Police in the Nepalese capital, Kathmandu, said they were investigating the case and had arrested several people involved in the trafficking of poor women to work as maids in India and other countries.