Six Ethiopians arrested in Merti, Isiolo

At least six Ethiopians were Saturday arrested at a village in Merti, Isiolo, as they waited to be transported to Nairobi.

The six told police they had left their country and were headed for South Africa for green pastures.

Residents called the police to inform them the group was stranded in Manyatta Gothrupa.

Police arrived there and interrogated the group before declaring they were illegal immigrants.

They were detained at the Merti police station pending arraignment on Monday, November 27, police said.

The arrest is the latest in a series where aliens from Ethiopia and Eritrea are arrested in Kenya while in transit.

They are usually smuggled to South Africa and the Middle East. Police say the campaign against the vice is ongoing.

Last Wednesday, at least 10 Eritreans were arrested on a major highway in Lodwar, Turkana.

The aliens who included six minors said they were headed for South Africa for greener pastures when they were found stranded in Merian Kawalase village.

Villagers alerted police the aliens were in the area before they were arrested.

Police said they were interrogated before being arraigned on Thursday for being in the country unlawfully.

Those arrested in Turkana in the latest trend say they had crossed from Ethiopia to Kenya in Turkana.

They are then ferried to Kitale and later to Nairobi and other major towns before they are smuggled out of the country.

The group said they were running from problems in their country and headed to South Africa, seeking greener pastures.

Police said most of the aliens use the Moyale route as they head to South Africa and the Middle East, oblivious of the dangers ahead.

Tens of aliens are often arrested in various places in the country as they wait to be moved to their next destinations.

Police and immigration officials have deplored increased cases of Ethiopian aliens nabbed in the country while in transit.

Officials from the Transnational Organised Crime Unit are conducting joint operations to deal with human smuggling.

Most of those arrested come to Kenya to seek jobs or are in transit.

As part of efforts to deal with the problem, an Ethiopian national was sentenced to 31 years in prison for trafficking 12 fellow Ethiopian immigrants in Nairobi.

Source: The Star

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