Ethiopia announced on Tuesday that it would investigate the allegations made in a Human Rights Watch report that Saudi border guards have killed hundreds of Ethiopian migrants.
After being published on Monday, the article generated indignation around the world, but a Saudi government source called the claims “unfounded.”
The foreign ministry announced on X, formerly Twitter, “The Government of Ethiopia will promptly investigate the incident in coordination with the Saudi Authorities.”
The ministry noted, considering the “excellent long standing relations” between Addis Abeba and Riyadh, that it is “highly advised to exercise utmost restraint from making unnecessary speculations until (the) investigation is complete.”
According to the research, there has been an increase in human rights violations along the treacherous migration path from the Horn of Africa to Saudi Arabia, where hundreds of thousands of Ethiopians reside and are employed.
The Saudi border guards opened fire on a group of migrants they had just released from prison, according to a 20-year-old Ethiopian woman from the Oromia area who was interviewed by the US-based rights watchdog.
“They rained bullets down on us. I cry when I recall,” she admitted.
According to the UN’s International Organization for Migration (IOM), hundreds of thousands of people leave Africa each year along the so-called eastern route in the aim of finding employment in the rich Gulf nations.