Mozambique deports over 50 Ethiopians who entered the country illegally

  • Mozambique has deported more than 50 Ethiopians who entered the country illegally, in some cases after a six-week journey. All of them were detained in December after 40 were found in the bush in the central district of Gorongosa, and the others were arrested in other parts of the country.

    They had made the long overland journey from Ethiopia, via Kenya and Tanzania, saying there in search of jobs and better living conditions. Some of the Ethiopians said they had been travelling for six weeks. One, Simion Sidebo, said he had paid more than $3,000 (£2,100) to transporters.

    Mozambican National Immigration Services spokeswoman Cira Fernandes said the Ethiopians had no passports or other documents. Repatriations were costly: last year, the government spent more than $200,000 repatriating nearly 4,000 undocumented migrants, she said.

    However, the UN's International Organization for Migration (IOM) agreed to carry the cost of deporting the latest batch, she said. They flew back to Ethiopia from the capital, Maputo, and the IOM will help them "start up small-scale businesses to avoid becoming illegal immigrants again", Ms Fernandes said.


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