World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


300 Somalis, Ethiopians are smuggled into Yemen

More than 300 Somalis, Ethiopians are smuggled into Yemen – UN refugee agency

More than 300 Somalis and Ethiopians were smuggled into Yemen last weekend with tales of a harrowing trip during which the smugglers beat three passengers to death and threw their corpses overboard, the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) said today.

Of the 335 who reportedly arrived in Yemen, only 35 came to the agency’s reception centre in May’faa in southern Yemen, but survivors of the dangerous Gulf of Aden trip often travel to other destinations, UNHCR spokesman Ron Redmond told journalists at the UN complex in Geneva.

The two boatloads of refugees left Shimbarale, Somalia, on 13 May and arrived at Belhaf, in Al Ayn, on the southern coast of Yemen, on the same day, he said.

The reports of the three murders illustrated “the extreme cruelty of the Somali smugglers, who seem to have no regard for human life and are only interested in making money,” Mr. Redmond said.

This year’s sailing season ends late next month, when the seas will be too rough for the smugglers’ boats, but resumes in September. UNHCR has been calling for joint action to tackle the problem and will continue to highlight the very urgent need for a more global approach to smuggling, he said.

Earlier this month UNHCR said 39 bodies, mainly Ethiopian, were found near Belhaf. Survivors said the deceased were among those forced at gunpoint to jump from their boat, which had developed a mechanical problem.

From September of last year until last month, a total of 241 boats arrived from Somalia in Yemen, an average of 30 boats a month. Several hundred people died during these trips, although an exact figure was unavailable, UNHCR said.

Yemen, one of the few countries in the region to have signed the 1951 Refugee Convention, is hosting more than 80,000 registered refugees, of which 75,000 are Somalis.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news