Ethiopians living in the Middle East have formed a union to tackle the abuse and suffering of Ethiopian migrant workers in the region.
After a meeting on Monday July 29, a memorandum of understanding was signed by representatives of the Ethiopian communities in Jeddah, Riyadh, Bahrain, Dubai, Yemen, Lebanon and Qatar.
The union vowed to defend the rights of Ethiopian migrant workers in all their countries and fight illegal traffickers in co-ordination with Middle Eastern governments.
Studies suggest the numbers of Ethiopian workers being smuggled into various Middle East countries is growing.
Rezene Lemlem, head of the Ethiopian Community Association in Jeddah, said that the increase in the number of illegal traffickers was exacerbating the problem of trafficking.
Nebiyou Belete, deputy head of the Ethiopian community in Yemen noted that there were a significant number of Ethiopians “wandering in different cities of Yemen after being smuggled by tortuous paths into the country.”