The Kingdom has intensified its campaign against foreigners working illegally in the country, with thousands of violators nabbed across the Kingdom in over a month.
From agriculture businesses to jewelry shops, law enforcement agencies are conducting inspections and apprehending workers in a wide range of trades. Expats working for more than one sponsor are the majority of those arrested.
One of the main upgrades in this campaign against illegal workers is the recent addition of helicopters to conduct inspections in more remote areas that were impossible to reach before.
In the last 40 days, authorities arrested 108,345 expats in various provinces across the Kingdom, according to a report released by the Ministry of Interior. Of these, 90,345 have been deported to their home countries, while the remainder are currently lodged at deportation centers in various provinces.
Thousands of other arrests, 24,872 to be precise, have been made while infiltrators attempted to cross into the Kingdom, especially along the border with Yemen.
Last year, the Ministry of Interior arrested over a million foreigners for violating labor rules, after it carried out a campaign in coordination with the Ministry of Labor.
Since then, officials have been careful in selecting cases where they not only apprehend the violators, but completely erase the phenomenon from a particular place or group.
But this clampdown has come with a price. Sources told Arab News that many workshops and garages have been hit hard by these inspections, since many of their workers are expats.
“According to residency rule, I can't change my profession, but at the same time I'm not able to run the garage which I was operating for the last 15 years. I was facing immediate threat of deportation.