Ten men were deported from Germany to Ethiopia last week. Asylum seeker support groups say deportations should be stopped during the COVID pandemic.
A group of 10 men were deported on a flight from Germany to the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Tuesday, October 27.
The plane, chartered by the Federal Interior Ministry and the European border agency, Frontex, departed from Munich, the Bavarian Regional Office of Asylum and Returns (LfAR) confirmed.
The returnees were Ethiopian men aged 24 to 58, LfAR told InfoMigrants.
LfAR also confirmed that a previously scheduled stop in Mogadishu, Somalia, had not taken place "because of a lack of agreement with Somali authorities." Reports last week from the Bavarian Refugee Council and Pro Asyl, an asylum seeker advocacy organization, had stated that a deportation flight was to take place to both Somalia and Ethiopia.
Rights groups oppose deportations
Almost all deportation flights from Germany have been suspended during the COVID pandemic. Pro Asyl said deporting people during the pandemic, which is ongoing, was irresponsible.
"Rushing through a deportation at this time, before the next lockdown, shows a distinct callousness," said Günter Burkhardt, Executive Director of Pro Asyl.
Deportation flights are also expected to resume to Afghanistan from mid-November, according to the Bavarian Refugee Council, Pro Asyl as well as the German broadcaster Norddeutscher Rundfunk.