About 1,700 illegal foreign workers repatriated

The Department of Immigration and Emigration has said that 1,748 foreigners working illegally in the Maldives have been repatriated this year.

Providing information to reporters at the Head Office of Immigration Department today, Controller of Immigration Dr Mohamed Ali said that last year, 2,500 illegal foreign workers were repatriated; while this year, 85 illegal foreign workers have been deported and 1,417 foreign workers have been repatriated upon their request.

He said that 175 foreigners were deported last year, and 146 foreigners involved in criminal cases have been deported this year.

Dr Mohamed Ali informed that illegal foreign workers have the opportunity to request to be repatriated. Speaking in this regard he said that Bidheysee Hiya (Foreigners’ Shelter) run by the Immigration Department will provide accommodation and food for foreign workers who are in poor economic condition, until they can be repatriated.

“More foreigners come to us voluntarily as we toughen our approach towards them. Everything will be arranged for those who come to us voluntarily. Island Aviation now has direct flights to Dhaka,” he said.

He said that the efforts to reduce illegal foreign workers will continue, and that about 10,000 foreigners will be repatriated by the end of the year.