Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen on Thursday said, “Around 270,000 women have gone to Saudi Arabia on employment. Among the 8,000 or so who have returned to the country, 53 were dead. This is a very small percentage.”

The minister was replying to newsmen at his office on Thursday. Earlier, he briefed the journalists about prime minister Sheikh Hasina’s visit to the UAE.

Momen said, “99 per cent of the women have successfully adapted to the situation and are also sending money home.”

The minister also said the government does not have information on how many women, among those who returned from Saudi Arabia were dead or had committed suicide.

About the torture of female workers who went to Saudi Arabia, the foreign minister said, “Some women face torture due to their own fault. They face language-related problems. They don’t understand the owner’s orders. Sometimes they are tortured for failing to cook according to demand. There’re many problems like this.”

In response to a question, AK Abdul Momen said, “No decision has been taken about stopping female workers being sent to Saudi Arabia.”

He also said instead of filing complaints to the shelter home of the embassy the female workers talk about torture after returning home.

The foreign minister thought in most cases the female workers have been facing torture as they go to Saudi Arabia without taking proper training in Bangladesh.

Acknowledging the critical situation about the Bangladeshi female workers, the foreign minister said they have been working to resolve the problems. “The situation is improving.”