Radio Erena: 06 January 2021
For many months now, the Government of Ethiopia continues to deny visa services to Eritrean nationals that were due to travel to Europe, the United States, Canada and other countries through a resettlement or family reunion programme.
Hundreds of Eritreans that had met all the necessary requirements to be relocated either individually or through the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and were only awaiting to board on flights were refused exit visas in Ethiopia.
The refugees, mostly women and children, due to be resettled through the International Organisation for Migration had been informed by telephone not to approach the country’s Department of Immigration to make enquiries about exit visas until further notice.
Although it remains unclear as to why the Government of Ethiopia continues to deny exit visas to the refugees that had lived in Addis Ababa and other Ethiopian cities for many years, there have been growing speculations it may have to do with the government’s attempts to look into any possible links between the refugees destined to travel abroad and Eritrean opposition groups and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front.