We call on the Saudi government to stop this brutal and inhumane treatment of these migrant workers immediately and to hold those who have committed these crimes accountable, including those in uniform as well as civilians. If the KSA seeks to deport undocumented workers, it is your right to carry out your laws; however let it be done in a civilized and respectful manner. These people, most of whom entered the country legally with visas, should not be treated as criminals, beaten up and tortured for not having papers or not having the right papers.
A number of the injured have not received any medical care. Those arrested are taken by authorities without leaving any information of their whereabouts with family or friends. One young girl told of how she was raped on the street by a civilian mob of Saudi men who attacked and gang-raped her.
We call on the international community, human rights organizations and the international media to expose the mistreatment and human rights abuses of these migrant workers in the KSA and take whatever action they can to protect these vulnerable people, including helping them to leave the country.
We call on Ethiopians, wherever they are, to make appointments at Saudi Arabian Embassies throughout the world to tell them to stop the torture, rape and brutality being waged against these migrant workers and to hold those who have committed the crimes accountable. As they have already made it clear, they do not want these migrant workers in their country and want to deport them, but at the very least they should still treat them with civility. This advocacy work is something Ethiopians should do in multiple places. Also, if Ethiopians have family or friends in Saudi Arabia who have been affected by these actions, get accurate details and give the information to the media.
These evil deeds thrive best in the darkness, so let the light shine on what happened. We commend those who have already done a remarkable job of exposing the truth through their eyewitness accounts, pictures and videos. Let the world know. However, the root solution to the plight of these migrant workers is for Ethiopians to have a government that cares for the welfare of all Ethiopians. Instead, many Ethiopians run to other countries for opportunities denied to them in their own country.
In the early eighties, the regime under Mengistu Hailemariam was known for the starvation of its people, but today the current regime under the TPLF/ERPDF is known for the constant flood of Ethiopians to other places in the world. Many do not ever make it and others suffer tragedy in other countries like they now are experiencing in Saudi Arabia.
Are Ethiopians people without a country? When will the government of Ethiopia be a government that cares about its people? Why should Ethiopians have to go in every direction for help except to their own government?
The heart of Ethiopia cries for its lost children who are dying abroad because their own country has become so inhospitable to life that they take huge risks that often end badly. No wonder they are the fifth largest group of people in the world subjected to human slavery.
Great numbers are also subjected to mistreatment, hardship and death as they fall into the open and greedy hands of human and sexual traffickers; dying in places like the Red Sea, Egypt, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, South Africa, Central America, and in a shipwreck offshore from the Italian island of Lampedusa. All of this is happening because of the lack of a government who cares for its citizens.
We call on all Ethiopians to find solutions to this urgent crisis in Saudi Arabia, but we cannot simply go from crisis to crisis. We must demand long term solutions. It is clear now that the only way Ethiopians can be respected as a people is to establish a government in their own country that sees all of them as precious human beings, putting humanity before ethnicity rather than the unhealthy system of the TPLF/ERPDF based on ethnic favoritism at the expense of everyone else. Ethiopians deserve a home where they can live freely and flourish, where people do not undertake horrendous risks for basic opportunities that should be theirs from the start.
We in the SMNE will continue to monitor the situation, but believe the TPLF/ERPDF regime should take immediate responsibility to resolve this current crisis by sending airplanes to bring their own citizens back home and to make the Saudis accountable for those who have been killed or injured. If the Saudis do not respond, Ethiopia should close down their embassy in KSA as a sign of strong condemnation for the barbaric mistreatment committed against the Ethiopian people. Furthermore, the TPLF/ERPDF should seek a moral solution to the longstanding problems within Ethiopia. How can the problem of mass migration be sustainably solved without deep and meaningful reforms, the restoration of justice and reconciliation? None of us will be free until all of us are free.
May God protect these Ethiopian brothers and sisters in Saudi Arabia and give our diverse and beautiful people the strength and humility to come together as we struggle to create a more just, united, reconciled and hospitable Ethiopia for all.
Posted By: Kumilachew