News / Middle East

African Migrant Protest in Israel Enters 4th Day

Fourth Day of Protests by African Migrants in Israeli
X
January 08, 2014 8:56 PM
Several thousand African migrants in Israel demonstrated Wednesday for a fourth day against a new law that allows authorities to detain indefinitely those without valid visas. The migrants say they are political refugees, but the government says they are economic migrants. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Scott Bobb
In Israel, several thousand African migrants demonstrated Wednesday for a fourth day against a new law that allows authorities to detain indefinitely those without valid visas. The migrants say they are political refugees -- but the government insists they are economic migrants.
 
The Migrants chanted that they are not criminals but rather refugees, as they gathered in front of the protested the Israeli Knesset.
 
The asylum seekers, who are mostly from Sudan and Eritrea, say Israel makes it difficult to obtain or renew their visas and rarely grants asylum.  But the government considers them to be infiltrators looking for work and wants them to leave.
 
“I’m a refugee. I’m from a tough region where a genocide happened. So I’m looking for protection, not for more fear because I live in fear, but to fix all the laws which were passed and treat us as human beings,” explained Adam Ahmed who came to Israel from Darfur five years ago.
 
According to the government, more than 50,000 Africans have entered Israel in the past seven years.  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday that the influx had virtually stopped since the completion last year of a five-meter-high fence along the border with Egypt.
 
“I want to make clear that demonstrations won't help them and strikes won't help," Netanyahu said.  "Just as we managed to stop completely the illegal infiltration of our borders so we are also determined to remove from here those who succeeded in entering before we closed the border.”
 
Rights workers counter that claim, noting that the migrants take low-paying jobs that Israelis don’t want.  But Israelis in some neighborhoods complain they have brought crime and fear.
 
The director of the Israel Project advocacy group, Marcus Sheff, said Israel is a small nation that cannot absorb such an influx.  But he said the government should approach the problem humanely.
 
“These issues are all over the world," noted Sheff. "They’re very, very complicated indeed and sorting out the difference between those people who genuinely need political asylum and illegal economic immigrants is something governments are struggling with.”
 
The demonstrators vow to continue their protests and are threatening hunger strikes to further press their demands.

You May Like

Turkey's Erdogan: Women Not Equal to Men

Speaking at conference in Istanbul, President Erdogan says Islam has defined a position for women: motherhood More

Ahead of SAARC Summit, Subdued Expectations

Some regional analysts say distrust between Pakistani, Indian officials has slowed SAARC's progress over the year More

Philippines Leery of Development on Reef Reclamation in S. China Sea

Chinese land reclamation projects in area have been ongoing for years, but new satellite imagery reportedly shows China’s massive construction project More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: dani from: iseral
January 08, 2014 7:05 PM
We r ecoñomical migrant iseral gov-t laing and need poltical profit from our suffer

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Changei
X
November 24, 2014 10:09 PM
Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid