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71 Irregular Ethiopian Migrants Repatriated From Tanzania

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The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) – Tanzania, together with the Tanzania Immigration Department last week facilitated the voluntary repatriation of 71 Ethiopian migrants. 

The migrants had been detained in Iringa, Ubena and Morogoro prisons for entering Tanzania irregularly.  The migrants, some of whom have been here for as long as two years, expressed their gratitude to finally be able to join their families. 

Since early 2014, the IOM has voluntarily repatriated 721 stranded migrants. This has been made possible through generous funding from the government of Japan, through the ‘Voluntary Return Assistance to Migrants in Tanzania’ project, which has now come to an end. 

Through this project IOM, in cooperation with the Tanzanian government, has provided return assistance to vulnerable stranded migrants. Focusing mainly on migrants from the Horn of Africa (Ethiopia), and to a lesser extent, migrants from the Great Lakes Region: Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda, the project has enabled the government to ensure sustainable and humanitarian returns for these people. 

In addition to providing direct assistance to vulnerable migrants, the project has focused on building capacity of the Tanzanian government, specifically the Tanzania Immigration Services Department (TISD) to manage irregular flows, through a series of trainings on return management (including mixed migratory flows, human rights and international protection for immigration officers).