Dubai: The son of a British former receptionist at the Qatari embassy in London is seeking crowdfunding to help the family with their discrimination case against the diplomatic mission.
Somali-born Mohamoud Ahmad, in his late 70s, was employed at the Gulf state’s embassy in Mayfair for almost 20 years. He claimed he was referred to in Arabic as a “donkey” and a “dog” by the head of the embassy’s medical department Abdullah Al Ansari, according to British reports.
Ahmad, from Kensington, has lived in England for more than 40 years, and claimed in 2014 unfair and wrongful dismissal, racial and age-based discrimination at a Central London employment court.
“My father worked for over 20 years at the reception of the Qatari Embassy in London. He was committed, dedicated and hardworking. However, during the latter years he suffered racial discrimination, specifically verbal and physical abuse,” the son posted on the UK gofundme site.
“In August 2013, he was called a ‘donkey’, a ‘dog’ and a ‘black slave’, then struck by the Qatari diplomat, Abdullah Ali Al Ansari, at the embassy. When he stood up to the abuse, he was immediately sacked.”
Ahmad’s claims were denied by the Qatari embassy and Al Ansari as “utterly untrue.”
The family is still waiting to see if the case will be taken up by a court.
According to the son, the past six years have been very difficult for the family “as we have been in limbo waiting to see if the case would go to court, as the embassy have tried to use state immunity to avoid facing up to their human rights violations.”
“We have paid all legal costs up till now, but now have to find a much-needed shortfall to afford to attend the court. We need to raise £25,000 to pay for the final legal costs,” he posted.
He insisted that it was “a landmark case” since it is one of the first ever discrimination cases to go to trial against an embassy in the UK.
“Embassies in the UK have been able to hide behind the shield of state immunity for so many years and, in our case, we hope to bring to light Qatari human rights abuses that have been suppressed for too long. I hope that with your support, we not only receive justice for my father, but will help to prevent other human rights violations in London embassies.”