Public urged to join anti-begging drive

Abu Dhabi Police have urged residents to report beggars as part of an ongoing crackdown on begging, which they described as an uncivilized phenomenon, the semi official daily 'Al Ittihad' reported on Sunday.

During the first eight months of 2010, the campaign resulted in the arrest of 70 beggars, including 29 women, the paper said, quoting general Mohammed bin Al Awadi, Head of Human Resources at the Abu Dhabi General Police Directorate.

The number is far lower than the 234 beggars caught in the same period of last year as a result of stronger co-operation from the public and intensifying police measures, including media awareness drives.

“We call on the public to report beggars to police no matter where they come from or how old they are because begging is an uncivilised phenomenon which harms the image of the society,” Awadi said.

Meanwhile, confirming that the number of beggars have reduced in Abu Dhabi, Major General Mohammed bin Al Awadi, Acting Director-General of Operations, Abu Dhabi Police, was quoted by 'Khaleej Times' as saying: "From January to August 2010, 42 beggars including 18 Arabs and 24 Asians were arrested in Abu Dhabi.”

Last year, 234 beggars were arrested and most of them were Asians.

Colonel Saeed Al Rashidi, Director of the unit for follow up of violators and foreigners at the Office of the Undersecretary for Naturalisation, Residency and Exits Affairs, said: “The department nabbed 70 beggars including 41 women and 29 men during the holy month of Ramadan.”

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