More than 2.37 million foreigners who were living in the country in violation of residency and labour regulations have been arrested by the Saudi authorities in the ongoing crackdown that began Kingdom-wide in November 2017.
Officials said as many as 609,632 of the detainees were deported to their respective home countries.
The campaign, titled the Nation Without Illegals, was launched late last year with the participation of 19 government and private sector agencies, including the Ministry of Labor and Social Development and the Passport Department.
According to campaign officials, in all 2,376,215 people were rounded up across the country in the past 13 months. The vast majority of them, or 1,846,25, violated residency regulations and 364,634 labour regulations.
Meanwhile, 165,327 people were arrested for breaching border security.
Officials said 39,088 people were apprehended while attempting to sneak into the Kingdom through its southern border. All of them were deported. About 51% of the infiltrators were Yemenis, 46% Ethiopians and the rest various other nationalities.
As many as 1,802 foreign residents were caught while attempting to leave the Kingdom illegally.
The officials said 3,253 people were charged with sheltering and providing transportation to the illegal residents. They included 982 Saudi nationals, of whom 933 were put on trial, punished and released while 29 others were still being questioned.
The campaign officials said a total of 13,401 illegal residents were currently being held in various deportation centres. They consist of 11,349 men and 2,052 women.
The officials said 334,136 violators were referred to their respective embassies and consulates to issue them travel documents while 412,169 were completing the formalities for their deportation.
Source Credit: Saudi Gazette