More than 140 Ethiopian migrants have been rescued from human traffickers off the Djibouti coast of the Red Sea.
The Ethiopian embassy in Djibouti on Tuesday said the migrants were rescued in an ongoing collaborative effort to rescue Ethiopian migrants and combat human smuggling,
“A collaborative operation in Djibouti successfully rescued 142 individuals of Ethiopian origin from the overloaded boat, en route to Yemen,” the embassy said in a statement.
The operation resulted in the apprehension of the smugglers, the statement read.
The rescue operations conducted in the same week the government concluded its repatriation campaign that brought close to 131,000 Ethiopians detained in Saudi Arabia for illegal entry back to their country.
The number of repatriates surpassed the target set when the campaign began on March 30, 2022, with a plan to bring at least 102,000 citizens back to their country within eleven months.
The repatriation push was successfully conducted with the concerted efforts of various stakeholders spearheaded by a National Committee, the foreign ministry said in a statement on Monday.
The last returnees arrived at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport, where they were welcomed by State Minister for Foreign Affairs Birtukan Ayano.
The government along with its partners will work to ensure the successful rehabilitation and integration of the returnees to enable them lead comfortable and productive lives, state minister Birtukan said.
Migrants from Ethiopia often risk their lives making the dangerous journey via the Gulf of Aden to Yemen in the hope of finding jobs in Saudi Arabia.
Most, however, end up either stranded in Yemeni or Saudi Arabia’s detention centers due to their illegal status.
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