ADEN, Yemen, May 20 (Xinhua) -- The International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Yemen said that it facilitated the return of 300 Ethiopian migrants from Yemen to their country this week.
"This week, IOM helped 300 Ethiopian migrants embark on two Voluntary Humanitarian Return (VHR) flights," the UN migration agency said in a tweet on Thursday.
The VHR flights are "the only safe and dignified pathway for migrants in Yemen to return home," IOM said, adding the program is a lifeline for migrants struggling to survive amid conflict.
On May 12, Yemen's government announced signing an agreement with the Ethiopian side to voluntarily transfer 5,000 illegal migrants from Yemen to the African country.
Yemen remains a transit country for tens of thousands of migrants traveling between the Horn of Africa and Saudi Arabia despite years of war.
UN reports indicate that many migrants in Yemen live in precarious conditions and face harsh living conditions without shelter or services.
Yemen has been mired in a civil war since late 2014 when the Iran-backed Houthi militia seized control of several northern provinces and forced the Saudi-backed government out of the capital Sanaa. ■