ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — Undocumented Ethiopian migrants who are being forcibly deported from Saudi Arabia by the thousands in a new crackdown say they were mistreated by authorities while detained.
In interviews with The Associated Press upon their arrival home, the returnees describe beatings, theft and stays in dirty prison camps.
Their accounts bring to light one of the world's busiest and most dangerous migrant routes but one that remains overlooked amid the larger rush toward Europe.
Saudi Arabia, like other rich Gulf nations, is a magnet for hundreds of thousands of people from impoverished East African nations like Ethiopia and Somalia. They pay traffickers for rides in boats across the narrow waters to Yemen, where they make their way by land through a war zone.
Saudi authorities say about 50,000 have been deported.