Addis Abeba – The Silte Zone Police in Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s (SNNP) Regional State, announced yesterday that its forces have arrested nine suspected human traffickers who were caught while smuggling 19 children from Sodo city, the administrative capital of Wolayta zone in SNNP to the capital Addis Abeba.
Shemsu Hikma, the inspector general of Silte zone police department, said the children, who are between five and 10 years old, were abducted and covered in grain sacks while being smuggled. The police received community tip-off in Worabe city after the trafficking victims screamed for help, the police said. The nine suspected traffickers who are all women were then intercepted in Sano kebelle.
Shemsu also said that the police has provided food and other supports to the children and was escorting them and the nine traffickers to Wolayta police.
The suspected traffickers told police that a large number of participants were involved in similar smuggling and that another truck carrying children has already traveled to Addis Abeba in the early hours on 05 May. The inspector called local communities to stand by security forces and prevent such acts. AS