Israel Orders African Migrants To Leave or Face Prison
African migrants who were fleeing persecution and conflict have until April to leave the country.
The Israeli government orders African migrants to leave their country or face prison, BBC reports.
The migrants have up to April to leave, and if they do so they will receive $3,500 and the option to return to their home country or to Uganda or Rwanda. If the migrants refuse to leave, they are threatened to be jailed.
Migrants from Eritrea and Sudan make up most of the African migrants in Israel, saying they came to seek asylum after fleeing persecution and conflict. Authorities, however, regard them as economic migrants.
The government claims this return is voluntary and will be humane. Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's prime minister, warns "that an unchecked influx of African migrants could threaten Israel's Jewish character."
Israel's spokesperson from the population and immigration authority claims that there are currently 38,000 "infiltrators"—the term the country uses to describe people who entered it not through an official border crossing.
This order temporarily exempts children, the elderly and victims of slavery and human trafficking.
The UN refugee agency and other human rights groups have responded, saying this problematic plan violates international and Israeli laws.
To learn more, watch this video by Al Jazeera below.
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