Increase in Eritrean migrants arriving in Ethiopia

Photo Credit: International Organization for Migration

TMP – 02/11/2017

Official figures from the Ethiopian government’s Administration for Refugee and Returnee Affairs (ARRA) indicate that over 20,000 Eritreans have arrived in Ethiopia in 2017 to date. This is almost equal to the number of Eritreans who arrived throughout the whole of 2016.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) says it has relocated over 15,000 newly arrived Eritrean migrants from reception centers to four refugee camps in northern Tigray province this year so far.

The UN agency is working closely with the Ethiopian government’s Administration for Refugee and Returnee Affairs (ARRA) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in carrying out pre-departure medical and administrative procedures in reception and screening centers before facilitating transportation for the new arrivals to established refugee camps in northern Ethiopia.

Khattab Khalid, the head of IOM Ethiopia’s Shire sub-office said: “Currently the IOM is relocating an average of about 100 persons per day, which represents an increase in what has been the most continual refugee flow into Ethiopia in 2017.”

“Nearly 50 percent of those relocated are youths between 18 to 24 years of age,” Khalid added.

The latest report from UNHCR indicates that Ethiopia, a country with 852,721 registered refugees, currently houses around 165,000 Eritrean refugees and asylum seekers.