Thursday 16 November 2023

Saudi Embassy: Why We Deported 264 Nigerians From Jeddah



The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Abuja has said Nigerian passengers deported earlier this week did not fulfil the entry conditions and requirements into the kingdom.

The Saudi Arabian Authorities had cancelled the visas of all the 264 passengers who were airlifted to Jeddah from Lagos and Kano on Sunday by Air Peace.

The country had asked the airline to return all 264 passengers to Nigeria, but later allowed 87 passengers to remain.

The passengers had gone through the Advanced Passengers Information System (APIS) during the check-in formalities in Nigeria which was also monitored by the Saudi authorities.

“The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Abuja would like to make a clarification about the media reports and Social Media releases concerning the deportation of Nigerian citizens at the point of entry into the Kingdom.

“The passengers whom were denied entry, and subsequently deported to their initial destinations, didn’t fulfil the entry conditions and requirements in accordance with the applicable rules and regulations of the Kingdom, as they submitted incorrect information to obtain a category of visa that doesn’t apply to them, which was discovered upon their arrival.

“The Royal Embassy would like to stress the importance of following the procedures and laws enacted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for all visitors.

“Furthermore, all passengers should review all the documents to determine their conformity with the conditions prior to departing from their countries to the Kingdom. This procedure was not limited to Nigerian citizens only, but rather to citizens of other countries,” a statement by the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Abuja said.

The Nigerian government had on Monday vowed to investigate the cancellation of visas of all the 264 passengers.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it is investigating the matter to see if any consular or aviation rules have been flouted.

The flight took off from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos via the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano on Sunday night and landed at King Abdul-Aziz International Airport, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

But to the consternation of the airline staff, the Saudi Arabian authorities announced that all the passengers’ visas had been cancelled.


Author: verified_user


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