Africa’s Backdoor, October 2007
In one month alone up to 10,000 migrants from Ethiopia and Somalia will pay $80 each to cross the Red Sea from Bosasso, Northern Somalia to Yemen, in small, unseaworthy fishing boats. This dangerous and often fatal journey is becoming one of the world’s biggest migration routes. The first week of October saw 2800 people arrive in Yemen, with an estimated 62 people dead or missing. In September over 6000 made the crossing with an estimated 28 people dead.
Some who make this journey have been displaced by renewed fighting in Mogadishu since the Transitional Federal Government, (TFG) backed by the Ethiopians, seized control from the Islamic Courts (ICU) in January. Others are refugees from the Ogaden Region of Ethiopia and are fleeing persecution by the Ethiopian Government. Yet others are economic migrants, desperate for work, and a better life.