Saudi Arabia arrests 2.82 million expats

Pedro Gonçalves
Saudi Arabia arrests 2.82 million expats

Saudi Arabia has arrested nearly "2.82 million violators of residency, work and border security systems" in the last two years, as the kingdom cracks down on illegal expats.

Since the campaign began in November 2017, there have been 2,827,564 offenders, including 2,204,460 for violating residency regulations, 432,461 for labor violations and 190,643 for border violations, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

Saudi authorities imposed immediate penalties against 424,223 of the arrested offenders, and transferred 385,618 others to "their respective diplomatic missions to obtain travel documents." Around 719,801 of those arrested have since been deported.

The figures revealed that "47,863 people were arrested while trying to cross the border into the kingdom, 50% of whom were Yemeni citizens, 47% were Ethiopians and 3% were of other nationalities." 

Saudi citizens who were involved in transporting or helping violators were also detained by authorities. 

The report stated that nearly 3,533 nationals were arrested under the sweeping campaign. 

Under the crack down efforts, officials announced a 50,000 riyal ($13,332) reward to anyone who reports illegal expats to authorities.