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Citing the Covid-19 epidemic, Saudi Arabia, has confined hundreds of African migrants in life-threatening conditions.

Report: African Migrants Are Dying In Saudi Coronavirus Centers

The Telegraph newspaper reveals that Saudi Arabia's government is holding hundreds of African migrants hostage in squalid conditions in a supposed bid to stop the coronavirus.

"My only crime is leaving my country in search of a better life. But they beat us with whips and electric cords as if we were murderers," says one of the African migrants currently being forced to live under torturous conditions, along with hundreds of others, in a coronavirus center in Saudi Arabia. An investigative report released by The Telegraph reveals that Saudi Arabia is keeping hundreds of African migrants—many young and of Ethiopian descent—in a center set up to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.


Harrowing pictures, showing dozens of men, cramped together in various states of emaciation, taken with mobile phones were sent to The Telegraph by migrants held in these detention centers. Some other pictures showed some men revealing the welts on their backs from being beaten by the guards at the center, and a picture of a teenager who had hung himself, although unreleased, was among the fold.

In March, the government of Saudi Arabia deported nearly 3,000 Ethiopian migrant workers as it struggled to deal with the coronavirus outbreak. And while 200,000 migrants were also slated for deportation, they have since been rounded from different parts of Saudi Arabia and left to suffer under squalid conditions.

The British newspaper was able to locate two of the centers, one in Al Shumaisi, and the other in Jazan, where this act, that has been described as modern slavery, has been taking place. With some migrants said to have been in these centers for up to four months, many international human rights bodies have condemned this act from one of the world's richest nations, who can afford to house migrants in better conditions.

The Telegraph reports now that the Saudi government has responded promising to look into the issue to ensure that "If facilities are found to be lacking, their needs will be addressed appropriately." There is no excuse for human beings to be treated this way and many have taken to social media to make that point.


Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

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