Ethiopian migrants return home

Thirty-two Ethiopian irregular migrants, who were detained in Egypt, have been released and flown back to Ethiopia on 11 June, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi pardoned the migrants following a visit by new Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

The migrants had been smuggled into Egypt on their way to Europe.

Many Ethiopian migrants have become stranded in transit countries like Egypt and often face detention for crossing borders illegally.

With funds provided by the European Union (EU), the returnees were transported to an IOM transit centre, where they were provided with overnight accommodations and a transportation allowance to return back home.

Working in collaboration with the Ethiopian government, IOM also provides general reintegration assistance, which supports the returnees’ economic, social and psychological needs.

The EU-IOM joint initiative is designed to facilitate responsible migration management through development-focused procedures on sustainable reintegration. Over 1,100 Ethiopian returnees from Chad, Djibouti, Kenya, Libya, Malawi, Mozambique, Niger, Somalia-Bossaso, South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania, Yemen and Zambia have been provided with assistance since July of 2017.

About 1,700 Ethiopian migrants have also returned home from Yemen over the past nine months. At the beginning of June, 361 migrants in Djibouti were also able to return home with the cooperation of the Ethiopian Embassy and the IOM. Among the returnees were migrants who returned from Yemen due to the current war in the country.

War and unrest in transit countries are the some of the major reasons Ethiopian migrants are choosing to return home.

TMP – 20/07/2018

Photo credit: IOM. Reception for Ethiopian returnees from Egypt at a transit centre

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