The arrival of the Ethiopian immigrants comes after the conclusion of an agreement between the governments of Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia, according to which more than 100,000 Ethiopians are expected to be deported to their country.
About 900 migrants arrived Wednesday at Ethiopia’s Addis Ababa airport as part of an agreement between the governments of Ethiopia and Saudi Arabia.
The returnees, who included mothers of young children, were assisted, while the International Organization for Migration registered them and provided them with food, temporary accommodation, medical assistance, and counseling services.
According to the International Organization for Migration, the returnees will receive humanitarian assistance and protection services upon arrival from government authorities, the International Organization for Migration, and other partners.
The UN agency warned that meeting the needs of 100,000 returnees would provide a major challenge for the government and the International Organization for Migration.
It is estimated that about 750,000 Ethiopians currently reside in Saudi Arabia, and it is possible that around 450,000 had traveled to the country illegally and would need help returning home.
Over the past four years, Saudi Arabia has sent nearly 352,000 Ethiopians back home.
Previous instances of Ethiopians being sent back from Saudi Arabia have included those who with diverse needs, risks, and vulnerabilities.
Among them were pregnant and breastfeeding women, the elderly, and people with medical conditions such as mental health disorders.