RIYADH: SHARIF M. TAHA
Published — Thursday 28 February 2013
Last update 28 February 2013 5:54 am
Prince Mohammed bin Naif, interior minister, has ordered a high-powered committee drawn from security organs to go to the southern parts of the Kingdom to assess the effectiveness and viability of security arrangements in the face of infiltrators trespassing into the Kingdom’s territory from the borders, local media reported.
The committee is assigned to determine the number of infiltrators, as well as find ways to deport them and submit immediate reports to officials, sources said.
According to sources from the Saudi Border Guard, the number of infiltrators into Saudi territories from the Saudi-Yemeni border has been estimated at 3,000 per day, most of them of Yemeni and Somali origin.
Based on the latest reports, Ethiopians are among these infiltrators. However, they are easily identified due to their limited knowledge of the Arabic language and the Saudi dialect in particular.
Meanwhile, Prince Mashari bin Saud bin Abdulaziz governor of Baha Region has called on citizens in the region not to succumb to rumors regarding the existence of large numbers of illegal Ethiopians immigrants. The rumors, which have been recently circulating on social networking sites, allege that Ethiopians are creating havoc, raping women and have even went as far as warning citizens from going out at night to avoid running into Ethiopian bandits.
Prince Mashari assured sources that the rumors are incorrect, adding that security men are vigilant to any threats or attempts by individuals or groups who try to tamper with the security and stability of the Kingdom’s citizens.
He urged all citizens in the region not to give any shelter or coverage to infiltrators or employees fleeing from their sponsors and, same time, warned those who are cooperating with the outlaws that they will be subject to strict penalties.
It is to be recalled that the Saudi security officials have recently opened three centers to host and shelter infiltrators for humanitarian purposes.
Some of them are subject to interrogation and repatriation but others remain in the Kingdom because they refuse to declare their nationalities or their country of origin.
Apart from infiltrators, the Saudi-Yemeni border area has witnessed a series of incidents related to weapons and the trafficking of narcotics. However, the Saudi border guards have recently seized 91 pistols and 11 Kalashnikov machine guns.
Meanwhile, child protection activists in the northern parts of Yemen have been active on the Saudi-Yemeni border to combat child trafficking operations along the common borders between the two countries.
The activists, who are working closely with UNICEF and the International Program on the Elimination of Child Labor (IPEC), are implementing projects, which aim to minimize infiltration and trafficking of children across the border, most notably into Saudi Arabia, and facilitate their return to school.