Africans abused in Saudi Arabia: currently hundreds of Africans are detained in Saudi Arabia’s COVID-19 detention centres.  Since March detainees face starvation and live in inhumane conditions.  There is overcrowding, toilets are overflowing, not enough food and water.  They are beaten and verbally abused by guards.  Some have died from the conditions in the detention centres; others have committed suicide to escape their living nightmare.  All this happens in the backyard of one the world’s richest country. Migrants were rounded up from their homes in various Saudi Arabian cities before being placed in the camps. Others are African refugees from war-torn Yemen.

Africans abused in Saudi Arabia | African migrants beaten by Saudi guards | Credit: Telegraph

Almost 3,000 Ethiopians were deported by the Saudi security services back to Ethiopia in the first ten days of April. A leaked UN memo said a further 200,000 were to follow. Saudi Arabia purport their actions are an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 by removing people who live in overcrowded communities.

Africans abused in Saudi Arabia| Dozens of emaciated men crippled by the Arabian heat inside one of Saudi Arabia’s detention centres  | Credit : Telegraph

Migrants in Saudi Arabia mainly work in low paying and physically demanding jobs such as construction and domestic work- all roles Saudi nationals prefer not do themselves. There African migrants enjoy few legal rights and many experience exploitation, sexual and racial abuse from employers.

Africans abused in Saudi Arabia | “Plenty of inmates are suicidal or suffering from mental illnesses as a result of living this for five months,” said one prisoner| Credit : Telegraph

Migrants travel difficult journeys to escape poverty in their home countries.  They pay human traffickers and bribe government officials while dodging thieves and facing deadly environmental terrain. All this with hopes of a brighter future.

What is happening in Saudi Arabia is inhumane and a gross violation of human rights.

Injustice to one is injustice to all.

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If you found this article interesting, you might want to read Police brutality in Africa during COVID-19 lockdown or The refugee crisis: searching for a new home