CAIRO: Nineteen Egyptians were deported from Saudi Arabia Thursday for violating residency laws; they had travel documents issued by the Egyptian consulate in Jeddah rather than passports, Youm7 reported.
The passports of the deportees were missing because they had disagreements with their Saudi sponsors, prompting them to leave their jobs and seek other vacancies until they were arrested by the Saudi authorities, security sources at Cairo Airport told Youm7.
The Cairo Airport police checked that the Egyptian nationals had no criminal records, ultimately allowing them to leave the airport.
The Saudi sponsorship system entitles business owners to hold the passports of foreign workers as long as they work for them. But some Egyptian workers stay in the Kingdom despite expired visas in hopes of finding another job.
The Kingdom has deported hundreds of Egyptians in the past weeks for violating residency laws. Most recently, 23 Egyptians were deported Oct. 4 for overstaying their work visas.
According to a report issued by the Saudi Labor Department in 2014, the number of Egyptians working in the Kingdom was estimated at 968,000 at the end of 2013, representing about 40 percent of the total Arab expatriate workforce in Saudi Arabia.
In 2013, the Saudi authorities deported about 200,000 foreign workers in four months due to illegal residency.