Human smuggling from Wollo, Ethiopia to Saudi Arabia: Askoblay criminals or enablers of dreams?

Adugna, Fekadu, Deshingkar, Priya and Atnafu, Adamnesh (2021) Human smuggling from Wollo, Ethiopia to Saudi Arabia: Askoblay criminals or enablers of dreams? Public Anthropologist, 3 (1). pp. 32-55. ISSN 2589-1715

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Abstract

Sensationalist accounts of human smuggling from Ethiopia towards Saudi Arabia allege that operations are controlled by criminal networks who converge in a variety of illegal markets posing a threat to national security. Such convergence narratives construct Ethiopian human smuggling as an organized criminal business that extracts profits from and inflicts violence on vulnerable people seeking a clandestine passage to work in the Gulf States. Our ethnographic research in Wollo, Ethiopia, challenges these narratives by showing that smuggling networks are developed through personalised relationships, based on co-ethnic bonds rather than extended and complex criminal networks. Smuggling has emerged in a particular context of surveillance and enforcement and the motives of smugglers are complex, making simple characterisations difficult. Smuggling is enabled by ethnic links on either side of the border where earnings from facilitation boost incomes in an otherwise impoverished context.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Human Smuggling, Ethiopia, Organized Crime, Criminal Networks, Human Trafficking, Horn of Africa
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Geography
Related URLs:
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2021 07:55
Last Modified: 08 Mar 2021 17:30
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/95924

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