Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Catholic Child Martyr: Iqbal Masih
At four years of age, Iqbal Masih was sold into debt slavery. In order to work off the 600 rupee ($12) loan given to his father, Iqbal tied tiny knots on a carpet loom for fourteen hours a day, six days a week. After six years, Iqbal was freed. He was shot at 12 years of age for speaking out against child slavery.
In January 2009, the United States Congress established the annual Iqbal Masih Award for the Elimination of Child Labor.
Iqbal's work and subsequent death inspired a 12 year old Canadian boy, Craig Kielburger to devote his life to Iqbal's cause and organize Free The Children.