Deri says remaining African migrants will go to communities that offered refuge

Interior Minister Aryeh Deri says that the some 18,000 African migrants who will be given temporary status in Israel will be put in communities that campaigned for the asylum seekers to stay in Israel.

“Let’s put them to the test,” he said in a press conference alongside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu following an announcement of a deal with the United Nations that will see another 16,000 sent to Western countries.

“I expect those who said we shouldn’t be removing people and said ‘oh, we will take them,’ to now follow through when put to the test,” he says, instructing his ministry’s director general to “draw up a list” of the communities that offered to be “refuge cities.”

Responding to a plan that would have African migrants deported against their will to Rwanda and Uganda, more than 1,000 Israeli families signed up with NGO Miklat Israel to host the asylum seekers at risk. Some families signed along with their entire kibbutz, saying the whole community would be a “sanctuary” for refugees.

The newly reached UN agreement will see that plan canceled.

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