The crisis faced by African migrants in Israel has not yet come to an end. A recent video was shared among Israeli social media users featuring a right-wing member of the Knesset. Oren Hazan appeared discussing the African migrants issue in the country.
In the video, Hazan appears talking about how migrants who came from “the black lands” brought Africa to Tel Aviv instead of taking Tel Aviv to Africa. “Instead of taking our technology, instead of taking our way of help, of care, of everything..”
The MK also goes on to say: “Now, they are getting married, they bring kids to the world.. And we will stop this too.”
Hazan also claimed: “They don’t even have a culture!”. He also addressed the government saying: “If you don’t kick them right now, then they will kick you in the future.”
“You need to destroy the problem when it is still small.”
Around 37,000 African migrants; 27,000 from Eritrea, 7,500 from Sudan and 2,500 people from other African nations, have been seeking asylum in Israel during the last 18 years posing a moral dilemma for the Israeli government, as people are split between expelling migrants or welcoming them.
Many of them entered Israel through Egypt, before Israel built a fence along the desert border hoping to end the illegal crossings.
Meanwhile, more than 4,000 migrants have left Israel for Rwanda and Uganda since 2013 under a voluntary program. Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu is still facing piling pressure from his government to expel more.
The video created discomfort among some Israelis who expressed their shock of hearing such remarks from an Israeli politician, especially as his hate-speech is similar to Hitler’s hate-speech toward Jews.
Some might think that Hazan is one politician in Israel who does not represent the whole country. Yet Hazan is an MK who was elected to represent Israelis.
Hazan has also mirrored the way Netanyahu’s government perceives the African migrant issue. Netanyahu described migrants as “worse than jihadists," defending his government’s decision to build a border fence with Egypt. Netanyahu argued that Israel that “would be faced with... severe attacks by Sinai terrorists, and something much worse, a flood of illegal migrants from Africa”.
Netanyahu was also accused of adapting anti-African migrants policies, especially after he cancelled an agreement with the UN refugee agency to relocate thousands of African migrants to Western countries in April 2018.
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