***Says Jail Term Awaits Those Who Remain
The government of Israel has issued a notice for thousands of illegal African migrants to leave the country or face imprisonment, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has reported, adding that the country said the migrants would be given up to $3,500 for leaving within the next 90 days.
The report said the order however exempts children, elderly people, and victims of slavery and human trafficking.
The report said the migrants would have the option of going to their home country or third countries, but that if they refused to leave, the Israeli authorities would have them thrown in jail starting from April 2018.
The Israeli government said the return of the migrants would be humane and voluntary even though the UN refugee agency said the plan violated international and Israeli laws.
It was learnt that a spokesperson for Israel’s Population and Immigration Authority revealed that the country currently has 38,000 migrants believed to have entered illegally and out of this number, 1,420 are being held in detention facilities.
The report said many of the migrants, especially from Eritrea and Sudan, say they are in the country to seek asylum after fleeing persecution and conflict, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes that if unchecked, the influx of African migrants could threaten Israel’s Jewish character.