Saudi Arabia arrests 337,281 illegal immigrants

05 Jan 2018 | By NewsBytes Desk

Saudi Arabia has arrested 337,281 expatriates, living illegally in the gulf nation without residence or work permit.

The move, a part of a month-long nationwide campaign 'Nation Without Illegal Expats' to nab offenders of residency/labor regulations, began on November 15, 2017.

Of the total immigrants arrested, 198,231 didn't have residence permits and 99,980 had invalid work permits, reported Gulf News.

Read on for more.

In context: Saudi Arabia's massive crackdown on illegal expatriates

05 Jan 2018Saudi Arabia arrests 337,281 illegal immigrants

Details65,715 detainees already deported

According to Saudi Gazette, 65,715 detainees have already been sent to their native countries.

Another 15,250 expatriates - 12,781 men, 2,469 women - are awaiting deportation at detention centers, and 47,474 have reportedly faced "immediate punishment".

The nationalities of detainees and those deported are yet to ascertained.

Notably, with a population of 3.2 million, Indians make for the largest expatriate community in Saudi Arabia.

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MeasuresYemenis make for 77% of Saudi Arabia's illegal expat community

Saudi Arabia had announced a 90-day amnesty in March 2017 for illegal immigrants to either regularize their stay or leave the kingdom.

It had warned that the offenders would be penalized with a hefty fine ranging between 15,000-100,000 riyals and would face deportation.

According to a Gulf News report, Yemenis make for 77% of Saudi's illegal expat community. At 22%, Ethiopians follow next.