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Muslim employers arrested after Filipina maid was found dead in freezer, tortured, strangled to death

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The body of a murdered Filipino house worker has been discovered stuffed into a freezer in Kuwait, as police say she was tortured or strangled to death.

Another in a long line of stories of abuse of domestic workers by Muslim “owners.” This behavior has its roots in the doctrine that unbelievers are “vile” (Qur’an 98:6) and must be subjugated (9:29), and of the lawfulness in Islam of sex with slaves and captives (4:24). (source Robert Spencer)

Ms Demafelis’s death prompted outrage in the Philippines and a ban on Filipinos traveling to work in Kuwait. Non-Muslim workers in many Muslim countries are subjected to the worst kind of treatment — beatings, slave-like conditions, and unimaginable horrors.

Ms Demafelis’s sister cried over her casket upon its arrival in Manila.

The Filipino maid was found dead and stuffed in a freezer in Kuwait as police probe the deaths of seven others and President Duterte orders ‘total ban’ on workers being sent to the country. (DM)

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  • Joanna Demafelis, 29, was sent to work for a married couple in Kuwait in 2014
  • Her body was found stuffed into a freezer in an abandoned rental property last week, and police believe she was tortured or strangled to death
  • Murder comes amid probe into the deaths of seven other Filipinos in Kuwait
  • President Rodrigo Duterte has issued a ban on workers being sent to the Arab nation and has offered to fly thousands of them home for free

Demafelis left her home in Iloilo City, on the Philippines’ island of Panay, in May 2014 after being recruited by Mona Hassoun, who is from Syria, and her Lebanese husband Nader Essam Assaf.

She traveled to the city of Al-Shaab but lost contact with her family in May the following year, CNN reports.

Her sister reported her missing to the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration in February the following year, and agents went looking for her in March.

Joanna Demafelis: Employers of Filipina maid found dead in freezer arrested

BBC, February 24, 2018:

The employers of a Filipina maid found dead in a freezer in Kuwait have been arrested in the Syrian capital Damascus after a manhunt lasting several weeks.

Joanna Demafelis, 29, was found frozen in her employers’ apartment more than a year after she was reported missing.

Both Nader Essam Assaf and his Syrian wife Mona are being held on suspicion of murder, officials said on Saturday.

Mr Assaf, who is a Lebanese national, was transferred to Beirut but his wife remains in custody in Damascus.

On Saturday, a Lebanese judicial official said the couple had left Kuwait and made a “very brief stopover” in Lebanon before travelling on the neighbouring Syria.

“Lebanon has asked Kuwait to pass on [Mr Assaf’s] police record,” the official added.

Ms Demafelis’s death prompted outrage in the Philippines and a ban on Filipinos travelling to work in Kuwait.

Both suspects became the subject of an international manhunt aided by Interpol.

Philippines foreign secretary Alan Peter Cayetano welcomed the news of the arrests, calling it a “critical first step in our quest for justice for Joanna”

The maid’s body was found this month with apparent signs of torture, Philippine officials said, in an apartment that had apparently been abandoned for at least a year.

In the aftermath of the discovery, Philippine authorities say they facilitated the return of more than 1,000 “distressed overseas Filipino workers” in Kuwait, most of whom had worked as household servants.

The country’s department of foreign affairs estimate that some 252,000 of its citizens are living and working there.

Kuwaiti authorities, meanwhile, have vowed to do everything possible to see justice is done.

Mr Cayetano said he expected Kuwaiti authorities to request the extradition of Mr Assaf from Lebanon, to stand trial in Kuwait.

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