UN Migration Agency Completes Movement of 233 Ethiopian Migrants Out of Yemen

Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration, Humanitarian Emergencies

Hudaydah – An IOM chartered sea vessel arrived early this morning (05/06) in Djibouti carrying 132 Ethiopian migrants bringing the total migrants evacuated since last week to 233.  The IOM vessel departed the port city of Hudaydah which has been experiencing violent clashes over the past week, making the logisitics of the movements extremely difficult. The IOM vessel was held for inspection by the parties controlling the sea movements for several hours.

IOM in Djibouti is currently receiving the migrants at the IOM reception centre and providing humanitarian assistance, medical support as well as looking at options for onward transportation to Ethiopia. IOM is working closely with both Ethiopian and Djibouti Governments to provide maximum support to the migrants.

The boat left with 132 passengers, 86 Ethiopian males, eight boys, 36 female and two girls. The majority of the migrants were held in a Sana’a holding facility, while some had been staying with host families supported by IOM.

Migrants from Ethiopia and Somalia attempt to travel through Yemen to reach the Gulf, in particular the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Both while travelling to and in Yemen, migrants are abused by smugglers and other criminals, including physical and sexual abuse, torture for ransom, arbitrary detention for long periods of time, forced labour and even death. Some migrants get caught up in the conflict, sustaining injuries or dying from shelling, and some are taken to detention centres, both official and unofficial. 

Through its Voluntary Humanitarian Return programme, IOM is providing transportation and return support from Yemen to the migrants’ final destinations in their home countries. In Yemen, IOM provides additional humanitarian assistance to migrants, including health care, shelter and aid items and psychosocial support, while also supporting displaced and conflict affected Yemenis. In Somalia, Ethiopia and Djibouti, IOM also provides emergency support to migrants starting out their journeys, while in transit and when returning.

This return movement from Yemen is funded by the US Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM), the Government of Germany and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Fund.

For more information, please contact Saba Malme in IOM Yemen, Tel: + 967 736 800 329, Email: [email protected]

  • IOM assisting some of the Ethiopian migrants prior to departure from Yemen last week. Photo: IOM