Illegal Ivorians given July 17 deadline to leave Israel

July 12, 2012 8:58 am
Immigrants sleeping on the streets of Israel/AFP

, JERUSALEM, Jul 12 – Illegal migrants from the Ivory Coast in Israel have less than a week to leave the country, the interior ministry said on Wednesday.

“The Ivorian nationals must leave voluntarily before July 17 if they want to enjoy various benefits, including a severance package of $500 per adult and $100 per minor,” the statement read.

After then, illegal Ivorians will face arrest and deportation, it added.

On June 24, an Israeli court said Interior Minister Eli Yishai’s decision to deport illegal Ivorians was legal.

“This is another positive step to safeguard the character of the state, and return the feeling of security to the residents of the neighbourhoods” Yishai said in a statement on Wednesday, referring to southern Tel Aviv, where many African migrants reside and tensions with local residents have been on the rise.

Interior ministry authorities put the number of Ivorians in Israel at approximately 2,000 out of some 60,000 African immigrants — primarily from Sudan and Eritrea — currently living in Israel.

Israel began expelling African illegals last month, following large-scale arrests.


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