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United Nations Urges Israel To 'Reconsider' Cancelled Migrant Deal

04 April 2018

Meanwhile, previously reported that the prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, on Tuesday, March 20, said that an electric fence along the Israel-Egypt border had saved the Jewish state from jihadist attacks or what he believed would be worse - a tide of African migrants.

In a volte face seemingly impelled by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's political considerations, the Israeli leader on Tuesday cancelled an agreement with the United Nations refugee agency to resettle thousands of African migrants.

The presence of the primarily Sudanese and Eritrean migrants in Israel has become a key political issue.

The four-term prime minister faces one of the greatest challenges to his career yet - he is under police investigation in three different corruption cases.

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Netanyahu named Germany, Italy and Canada as examples of countries that would accept the migrants, though German and Italian officials said they had no knowledge of any such agreement.

Netanyahu's decision to nix the United Nations deal was praised by his government.

Thousands of African asylum seekers who reached Israel after unsafe voyages may have lost their last best hope to be released and sent to western countries or resettled in Israel after members of the Israeli coalition government trashed a negotiated asylum plan. The right-wing government has been under pressure from its nationalist voter base to expel the migrants. He then posted on Facebook he was putting the agreement's implementation on hold. "I call on the prime minister to cancel it entirely".

He made the remarks at a meeting with representatives of residents of south Tel Aviv, a poor area that has attracted the largest migrant community and where many of its inhabitants want the Africans out.

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The country said the migrants would be given up to $3,500 for leaving within the next 90 days.

"We continue to believe in the need for a win-win agreement that can benefit Israel, the worldwide community and people needing asylum and we hope that Israel will reconsider its decision soon". The groups said Israel is capable of absorbing all of the migrants, describing them as "asylum-seekers who came knocking on its door".

The Human Rights Watch (HRW) condemned the killings in Gaza as "unlawful, calculated" in a report released Tuesday morning that said the border protests posed no immediate threat to Israeli soldiers.

Before announcing the deal, Israel had been moving ahead with plans to deport numerous Africans to Rwanda. UNHCR has acknowledged Netanyahu's decision to suspend the deal, Carlotta Sami, the organization's spokesperson for southern Europe, said on Tuesday.

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United Nations Urges Israel To 'Reconsider' Cancelled Migrant Deal