Human rights groups say Israeli forces are entering Egypt’s Sinai desert to intercept African migrants. The reports say the soldiers are handing the migrants over to Egyptian forces there.
The groups say this is an attempt to circumvent international law that forbids nations from repatriating asylum seekers if they might be in danger in their home countries. Israel says most of the migrants are seeking work, not asylum.
The Israeli military said it is operating in the framework of the law.
The IDF responded to the report by saying: “In recent weeks, the IDF has several times had to prevent illegal entry attempts into Israel, until Egyptian forces arrival and take the infiltrators. The IDF carries out its activities in accordance with the law.”
There was no immediate comment from Egypt.
The groups said the Israeli military censor banned publication of the report in Israel.
The report includes a statement from an Israeli soldier who relates how his unit set up a patrol a few hundred meters inside Egypt to stop migrants.