SHARJAH //A newborn baby survived being thrown down a ninth-floor rubbish chute by his mother, police said yesterday.
The baby boy, who was an hour old, had been wrapped in newspapers and a plastic bag. He suffered only minor cuts.
He was found by the apartment building's watchman, who told police. The mother, a Filipina maid, was arrested a few hours later.
She has been referred to public prosecutors, along with a couple accused of employing her illegally.
"She assumed the height would kill the baby instantly. It was a miracle the boy survived," said Brig Abdullah Mubarak Al Dukhan, deputy director of Sharjah Police.
"The watchman was carrying out his regular morning rounds at 6am on Monday and was throwing out rubbish from the aluminium rubbish container when he found the baby on top of rubbish bags."
Police say the maid gave birth between 4am and 5am on Monday, while her employers were asleep. She crept into a bathroom, cut the umbilical chord with a kitchen knife, wrapped up the child and threw him down the rubbish chute, they allege.
Ambulance crews treated the baby at the scene before taking him to Al Qasimi Hospital. He was in a stable condition last night.
Once the baby has the necessary vaccinations, he will be cared for by Sharjah Social Services.
The maid's employers, a couple with a five-year-old son, were informed of the incident by police at about noon on Monday. They face charges for employing the mother illegally.
Police say the maid confessed to having become pregnant out of wedlock by a man in another country, and concealing the pregnancy from her employers.
"She was reported to have absconded from her previous sponsor and was working illegally," said Brig Al Dukhan.