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Cablegate: Response to Inquiry Re. Claims Facility for Camel

VZCZCXRO2047
OO RUEHDE
DE RUEHKA #1092 1840800
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 030800Z JUL 07
FM AMEMBASSY DHAKA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 4457
INFO RUEHAD/AMEMBASSY ABU DHABI 0955
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD 1723
RUEHNK/AMEMBASSY NOUAKCHOTT 0005
RUEHDE/AMCONSUL DUBAI 0840

UNCLAS DHAKA 001092

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM KCRM KWMN AE SU PK MR BG
SUBJECT: RESPONSE TO INQUIRY RE. CLAIMS FACILITY FOR CAMEL
JOCKEYS

REF: STATE 86406

1. (U) At request of Department (reftel), Post has requested
information from the GOB on the facility being set up by the
United Arab Emirates (UAE) to compensate camel jockeys. Post
addressed Department's questions to the Ministry for Home
Affairs (MOHA), which oversees anti-trafficking programs and
represents the GOB on the camel jockey issue.

2. (U) MOHA provided background on the agreement. The
memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed between the UAE
government and GOB on April 25, 2007. The MOU covers the
period going back to 1993, and all camel jockey victims will
be eligible to apply for compensation for mental and physical
injuries. A board consisting of the MOHA (Bangladesh) and
Ministry of Interior (UAE) will be formed to make decisions
on the eligibility of compensation claims.

3. (U) Answers to Department's questions follow:

(A) Does the GOB expect all former camel jockeys to use the
compensation process established in the MOU?

Yes, the GOB expects this.

(B) If a former child camel jocket does not pursue
compensation through the MOU claims process, does the MOU
permit the child or his parents to seek compensation through
Bangladeshi, UAE, or third country courts?

This is still under review by the GOB.

(C) If a former child camel jockey requests but is denied
compensation through the MOU claims process, does the MOU
permit the child or his parents then to seek compensation in
Bangladeshi, UAE or third country courts?

This is still under review by the GOB.

(D) If a former child camel jockey requests and receives
compensation that he or his parents believe is inadequate,
does the MOU permit the child or his parents then to seek
additional compensation through Bangladeshi, UAE, or third
country courts?

This is still under review by the GOB.

(E) If the claims facility does not in fact operate in
accordance with the MOU, will court actions that would
otherwise be barred by the MOU become permissible?

Yes, if the process does not operate in accordance with the
MOU, the GOB would reserve the right to take other court
action.

(F) What steps is the government taking to ensure child camel
jockeys are aware of the claims process?

MOHA is currently preparing a list of all camel jockeys to
inform them of this process. They are also setting up
"service centers" at the district level, and are convening a
meeting of deputy commissioners (local government officials)
to explain the MOU and the procedure. A technical committee,
chaired by the deputy commissioner, will review and verify
claims at the local level.

(G) Would a lawsuit seeking compensation for former child
camel jockeys have any impact on implementation of the claims
facility or of the UAE-UNICEF program in your country?

The GOB did not indicate an official position on this.

(H) Has the administrative board been constituted yet?

The GOB is in the process of constituting the board.
PASI

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