Saudi Arabia probes worker riots following Binladin Group layoffs
A large number of workers who have not been paid their salaries for months and have been laid off burned several buses
Saudi Arabia is investigating mob riots reportedly carried out by disgruntled employees belonging to the Saudi Binladin Group, a construction giant, on Saturday.
Local media reports say, large number of workers who have not been paid their salaries for months and have also been laid off burned seven buses following a face-off with the management.
Spokesman for the Makkah civil defense Major Nayef al-Sharif said firefighters managed to put out the blaze without any injuries overnight. The events related to the Binladin Group has attracted media attention around the world.
A Binladin Group source revealed to al-Watan that nearly 77,000 final exit permits of employees have been issued by Monday. The Saudi newspaper also reported that at least 12,000 Saudi national employees are set to lose their jobs.
According to reports, thousands of the firm's employees have been staging protests in Mecca and the Red Sea coastal city of Jeddah for several weeks. Some of them said they have not been paid for at least four months.
Another Saudi newspaper, Okaz, reported that Saudi employees were given the option to either wait for their delayed salaries once the company’s financial assets have been cleared or to resign with two month’s salary as severance package.
At least seven protesters have been arrested following the arson attack in which company buses were torched.