July 26, 2011

Oromo: Drought Takes Lives of Immigrants

Eighteen immigrants on the border of Djibouti and Somali succumbed to starvation and thirst in the Banka Geriyad area, also known as the plain of death.

Below is an article published by Suna Times:

Eighteen Oromo immigrants from Ethiopia have died of thirst and starvation along the border between Djibouti and Somaliland in the past few days.

Lowya’ade deputy district officer, Sa’id Abdirahman and other residents in the area have confirmed the bodies of eighteen dead immigrants inside the neighbouring Djabouti along the border with Somaliland’s Sanag district.

The officer said all the dead bodies were Oromos from the neighbouring Ethiopia, saying that there were no Somalis among the dead immigrants.

Reports from the area says the immigrants believed to be on their way to Djibouti have died of thirst and starvation at Banka Geriyad area (plain of death) along the border between Djibouti and Seyla district of Somaliland.

The bodies of all the eighteen ill-fated illegal immigrants have been found on the other side of Djibouti, nearing Somaliland border with Djibouti.

Officials from Djibouti have reportedly arrived at the scene of mass-death to collect bodies for burials and look for others who could be alive and hiding in the area.

Illegal immigrants from Ethiopian, Eritrea and Somalia escaping joblessness and political instability in their countries, normally treks between Somaliland and Djibouti without food and water, in search of jobs and decent life, sometimes bypassing settlements and towns along the coast of Red Sea to avoid interceptions by local authorities in the area in fear of deportation, thus risks their lives.