ADDIS ABABA – A high level government delegation led by Finance Minister Ahmed Shide visited Saudi Arabia, where they discussed the situation of Ethiopians detained in the Gulf nation.
The delegation, involving religious leaders such as President of the Ethiopian Islamic Affairs Supreme Council, Mufti Hajji Omar Idris, held meetings with Saudi Arabia’s officials, including minister of interior, Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif.
The two sides discussed bilateral issues and the situation of Ethiopian citizens in the gulf nation.
“Various discussions were held to improve the treatment of imprisoned Ethiopians, facilitate situations to repatriate some of them and on the possibility of granting amnesty to sentenced Ethiopian prisoners,” said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs today.
The discussions have been said to yield results that could give long-lasting solutions to the challenges that Ethiopian citizens are facing in Saudi Arabia, MoFA said.
Despite a recent drop in migration, many from the East Africa region in general and Ethiopia in particular risk their lives making the dangerous journey via the Gulf of Aden to Yemen in the hope of finding jobs in Saudi Arabia.
Most end up either stranded in Yemeni or Saudi Arabia’s detention centers due to illegal entry.
The government airlifted tens of thousands of detained Ethiopian migrants last year with the support of its partners.
However, many more are still reportedly held in the Kingdom’s detention centers with deplorable facilities.
Featured Image: The delegation led by Finance Minister Ahmed discussed bilateral issues between the two nations top government officials of Saudi Arabia and they also met with Ethiopian community in there during their five-day long visit [Photo MoFA]