360 Somali refugees arrested [Archives:2005/901/Local News]

December 8 2005

SANA'A – Dec. 6 – Security authorities in Marib have arrested 360 Somalis in Al-Husoon area, 10 kilometers east of Marib city, out of which 114 were women. Those Somalis have entered Yemen illegally through Shabwa coasts and infiltrated to Marib governorate.

Commander Abdulnasir Al-Qawsi of Marib security forces said that the detainees were handed over to immigrations authorities to deal with them. However, sources in Marib said that there is no immigration office in the city while there is a large number of Somalis being detained in Marib, while others work in manual labors in Al-Husoon area.

These infiltrations take place in spite of a large Somali refugee gathering in front of the UNHCR premises in Sana'a. They demand that their refugee cards should be renewed, and to be given their allotted refugee aids. A source in the UNHCR said that six centers for registering refugees were opened, during last two weeks.

The officially registered number of refugees in Yemen is around 76 thousand, but some sources say that most of these have left Yemen to the neighboring countries, in search of employment.

The condition of Somali and other African refugees is worsening because of their bad economic conditions. They could not merge in the Yemeni community, because the Yemenis think that many of them carry dangerous diseases such as AIDS. Common people in Yemen think that those Somalis receive monthly sums from UN that reach more than $200.